This work was supported by a predoctoral fellowship from the Walther Cancer Institute.
Concepts in Caregiver Research
Article first published online: 23 APR 2004
Journal of Nursing Scholarship
Volume 35, Issue 1, pages 27–32, March 2003
How to Cite
Hunt, C. K. (2003), Concepts in Caregiver Research. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 35: 27–32. doi: 10.1111/j.1547-5069.2003.00027.x
- Issue published online: 23 APR 2004
- Article first published online: 23 APR 2004
- Accepted for publication July 23, 2002.
- caregiver burden;
- caregiver appraisal;
- concept analysis
Purpose: To clarify and delineate conceptualizations of the effects of caregiving for nursing research and practice with family caregivers.
Organizing Construct: The biopsychosocial (psychosocial and physiological) sequelae, both negative and positive, associated with providing care for a relative or friend with a chronic illness.
Methods: Literature reviewed was obtained via searches of CINAHL, MEDLINE, and PsycInfo computerized databases through mid-2002. Key words for the searches were caregiver, caregiving, family caregiving, caregiver burden, and caregiver appraisal. Reports of both earlier reviews of literature and original research were included.
Findings: Negative concepts included caregiver burden, hassles, strain, and stress. Positive concepts included caregiver esteem, uplifts of caregiving, caregiver satisfaction, finding or making meaning through caregiving, and gain in the caregiving experience. A neutral concept for describing the caregiving process is caregiver appraisal. Although earlier studies were focused on negative aspects of caregiving, more recent research has also included positive aspects.
Conclusions: More attention should be given to (a) gender and cultural differences in caregiving, (b) development of flexible interventions, and (c) the biophysical sequelae of caregiving.