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Keywords:

  • caregiver distress;
  • elder care;
  • family caregiving;
  • family stress

Abstract: The present study used structural equation modeling to examine the potential mediating effect of family conflict on caregiver strain in a randomly drawn household sample of 650 adults with primary care responsibility for an adult age 50 or older with a mental disability. Caregiver strain was directly influenced by the conflict, disagreements, and hardships experienced by the caregiver’s family. Specifically, family conflict was found to mediate the impact of care recipient mental impairment and caregiver educational level on caregiver strain, and mediate partially the impact of caregiver income and caregiver-care recipient relationship. Findings suggest the importance of considering family-centered approaches when designing interventions to assist family caregivers.