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Project Details

Australian Guide for Carers

Photo of cover of "The Wellness Guide for Carers"
Project Summary: 

The Australian "Wellness Guide for Carers" is a resource and support guide for older family caregivers, such as those caring for a spouse. It was developed with the involvement of many caregivers and covers topic of concern for caregiver, including becoming a caregiver, the caregiving relationship, exercise and healthy eating, social support, and other topics. It was developed by Deakin University with funding from the Victorian State Government Department of Human Services.

Main Findings: 

Deakin University conducted an evaluation of the use of the online version of the Guide for Carers. The evaluation included pretest, posttest measures of physical and mental health and a questionnaire with associated focus groups. A purposive sample of 21 older carers who were “new” carers was selected for the study.
Measures included: Locus of control (LOC), Short Form 12, depression anxiety stress scale, and questionnaire.
Results: Participants embraced the wellness guide as an excellent resource. It changed their behavior and improved their health on LOC measures, although changes in physical and mental health were not statistically significant. The study concluded that the wellness guide assisted carers' preparedness for their role and enhanced their sense of personal control over demanding situations.

Policy, Practice or Research Impacts: 

An increasing number of older adults are primary caregivers. The impact on their health can be profound. Without their help, many people would be institutionalized. This guide is an example of a low-cost intervention that can provide significant help and support for caregivers.

Project Type: 
Contact Person: 
Kathy Simpson
Contact Person's Email Address:
Health Research for Action, UC Berkeley
Principal Investigators: 
Professor S. Leonard Syme
Research Publications and Reports:
An Evaluation of a Wellness Guide for Older Carers Living in the Community

Website for Project or Program: 
Victorian State Government Department of Human Services
Location - Countries: