As the pandemic has painfully reminded us, our entire society depends on caregivers yet we undervalue the vital contributions of unpaid family caregivers. It benefits all of us when it is possible for people to care for their loved ones who need care, so we should increase support for family caregivers.
Millions of Americans provide daily unpaid care for family members. About 1 in 5 American adults provides care for a child, while about 1 in 6 provides unpaid care for another adult, often aging loved ones.
Even though the current needs for caregiving are unmet, the need for these caregivers is growing as the total number and the proportion of Americans over 65 years of age increases each year. Already, about 1 in 5 people who need caregivers do not have their needs met.