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Caregivers Count Too! – Section 3: Caregiver Assessment Table

Caregiver Assessment: Information Categories,
Areas to Assess and Possible Questions






Caregiver relationship to care recipient

  • Physical environment (home, facility)
  • Household status (number in home, etc.)
  • Financial status
  • Quality of family relationships
  • Duration of caregiving
  • Employment status (work/home/ volunteer)


What is the caregiver’s relationship to the care recipient?

  • How long has he/she been in the caregiving role?
  • Does the care recipient live in the same household with the caregiver?
  • Is the caregiver married? Have children? How many people live in the caregiver’s household?
  • Are other family members or friends involved in the care?
  • Is the caregiver currently employed? Full-time or part-time?
  • What is the caregiver’s household income?
  • How would the caregiver rate his/her quality of family
  • relationships?


Caregiver’s Perception of Health and Functional Status of Care Recipient

Activities of daily living (ADLs; bathing, dressing) and need for supervision

  • Instrumental Activities of
    Daily Living (IADLs; managing
    fi nances, using the telephone)
  • Psycho-social needs
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Behavioral problems
  • Medical tests and procedures


Can the care recipient carry out ADLs without assistance (bathing, dressing, etc.)?

  • Can the care recipient carry out IADLs without assistance (managing fi nances, shopping)?
  • Can the care recipient administer his/her medications correctly?
  • Does the care recipient have any mental health diagnoses or emotional problems?
  • Does the care recipient have any memory loss or cognitive impairment?
  • Does the care recipient have any behavioral problems? How frequently do they occur and
    how much do they bother or upset the caregiver when they happen?
  • What medical tests and procedures have been done or are needed?



Caregiver Values and Preferences

Caregiver/care recipient
willingness to assume/
accept care

  • Perceived fi lial obligation to
    provide care
  • Culturally based norms
  • Preferences for scheduling and
    delivery of care and services


Is the caregiver willing to
assume the caregiver role? Is
the care recipient willing to
accept care?

  • Does the caregiver feel he/she
    is obligated to provide care?
  • What types of care
    arrangements are considered
    culturally acceptable for this
  • What are the caregiver’s (and
    the care recipient’s) preferences
    for the scheduling and delivery
    of care and services?



Well-being of the Caregiver

Self-rated health

  • Health conditions and symptoms
  • Depression or other emotional
    distress (e.g., anxiety)
  • Life satisfaction/quality of life


How does the caregiver rate
his/her own health? Does the
caregiver rate his/her health
better, about the same, or worse
than it was 6 months ago?

  • Does the caregiver have any
    health conditions or symptoms?
  • How often in the past 6 months
    has the caregiver had a medical
    exam or received treatment for
    physical health problems from
    a health care practitioner?
  • Depression Scale (See Selected
    Measures in Appendix III)
  • How often does the caregiver
    feel anxious or angry when he/
    she is around the care recipient?
  • How often does the caregiver
    get a full night’s sleep?
  • How does the caregiver rate
    his/her life satisfaction and/or
    quality of life?



Consequences of Caregiving

Perceived challenges

  • Social isolation
  • Work strain
  • Emotional and physical
  • health strain
  • Financial strain
  • Family relationship strain
  • Diffi culties with formal providers


Perceived benefits

  • Satisfaction of helping family member
  • Developing new skills and competencies
  • Improved family relationships

Perceived challenges

  • Does the caregiver have a social
    support network or is he/she
  • Does the caregiver suffer any
    work-related diffi culties due to
    the caregiving role?
  • Does the caregiver suffer from
    any emotional and/or physical
    health problems as a result of
  • How much does the caregiver’s
    health stand in the way of
    doing things he/she wants
    to do?
  • What has been the fi nancial
    strain, if any, on the caregiver
    due to his/her caregiving role?
  • How much disagreement has the caregiver experienced with other family members over particular
    care issues?

Perceived benefits

  • Does the caregiver feel satisfaction in helping a family member?
  • Does the caregiver feel he/ she has developed new skills
    and knowledge as a result of caregiving?
  • Has there been an improvement in family relationships (general closeness, communication,
    similarity of views, degree of getting along) as a result of the caregiving situation?



Caregiver Skills / Abilities / Knowledge to Provide Care

  • Caregiving confidence and competencies
  • Appropriate knowledge of medical care tasks (wound care, etc.)


  • How knowledgeable does the caregiver feel about the care recipient’s condition?
  • What are the skills and abilities needed to provide care for the care recipient?
  • How would the caregiver rate his/her confidence and competence in these areas?
  • Does the caregiver have the appropriate knowledge of medical care tasks (wound care, ability to administer medications correctly, etc.) and transfer techniques (moving from bed to chair, etc.)



Caregiver Resources

  • Helping network and perceived social support
  • Existing or potential strengths (e.g., what is presently going well)
  • Coping strategies
  • Financial resources (health care and service benefits, entitlements such as Veteran’s Affairs, Medicare)
  • Community resources and services (caregiver support programs, religious organizations, volunteer agencies)
  • Can the caregiver rely on his/her social support network for help (i.e. respite)?
  • What are the caregiver’s coping strategies? Are these healthy/constructive?
  • Has the caregiver accessed all financial benefits and entitlements he/she or care recipient is eligible for (e.g., Veteran’s Affairs)?
  • What other community resources/services is the caregiver utilizing or aware of (e.g., caregiver support groups, religious organizations)?

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