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Taking care of Idaho's thousands of family caregivers

Jessica Guthrie wheels her mother, Constance, back to her bedroom after dinner in Fredericksburg, Va., on Monday, Sept. 19, 2022. “To be a caregiver of someone living with Alzheimer’s is that you watch your loved one die every day. I’ve been grieving my mom for seven years,” Jessica says. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)
Wong Maye-E
/
AP
Jessica Guthrie wheels her mother, Constance, back to her bedroom after dinner in Fredericksburg, Va., on Monday, Sept. 19, 2022. “To be a caregiver of someone living with Alzheimer’s is that you watch your loved one die every day. I’ve been grieving my mom for seven years,” Jessica says. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)

One out of every four people in Idaho is a family caregiver. That’s according to the Idaho Caregiver Alliance, which provides support to these thousands of people who take care of family members who can no longer take care of themselves.

They are husbands and wives taking care of sick spouses, adult children taking care of aging parents, and moms and dads taking care of children with sometimes severe medical conditions. They are unpaid, often overworked and frequently overwhelmed by the day-to-day task of caring for the people they love.

Dr. Sarah Toevs is director of the alliance and directs the interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Aging at Boise State University. She joins Idaho Matters to talk about the role of caregivers and about the alliance’s 13th annual conference which is set for this Saturday.

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