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Open Access Study protocol

Effect of the act on promotion of personal autonomy and care for dependent persons on their family caregivers

Magdalena Cuevas Fernández-Gallego12*, José Miguel Morales Asencio2, Francisco Javier Martín Santos12, Rafaela Cruz Arándiga3, Eugenio Contreras Fernández4, Juan Pedro Batres Sicilia3, Francisco Javier Navarro Moya1, Isabel Lorenci Abajo1, Miriam Celdrán Mañas5 and Candela Bonill de las Nieves6

Author Affiliations

1 District Health Department of Malaga, Andalusian Department of Health Services, Malaga, Spain

2 Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Malaga, Malaga, Spain

3 District Health Department of Northeast Jaen. Andalusian Department of Health Services, Jaen, Spain

4 District Health Department Costa del Sol. Andalusian Department of Health Services, Malaga, Spain

5 Andalusian Department of Health Services, Hospital Torrecardenas, Almeria, Spain

6 Andalusian Department of Health Services, Regional University Hospital Carlos Haya, Malaga, Spain

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BMC Health Services Research 2012, 12:462  doi:10.1186/1472-6963-12-462

Published: 17 December 2012

Abstract

Background

The need of home care services is becoming an increasingly common scenario. These cares are mainly provided by the dependents’ relatives specifically, by the women part of the family. This situation might take years, decreasing the physical and psychological health of the caregiver. In Spain, the Act of Promotion of Personal Autonomy and Care for dependent persons, guarantees those dependent persons and their caregivers to have access to social services or to financial grants. The aim of this study is to Know the possible effects of the benefits provided by this Act in regards to the mental health, the quality of life and use of health services by the family caregivers assisting their relatives in situation of dependency.

Methods and design

A longitudinal descriptive study following-up a cohort of patients and caregivers. The study shall be carried out in Andalusia. It shall include the baseline assessment of the variables in those caregivers free from the exposure factor (reception of assistance pursuant to the Act). Following, once the benefits have been received, this cohort shall be followed-up.

The study shall take three years, and the starting date for its development as well as its funding is January 2011.

Discussion

The longitudinal assessment of the rate of change of the variables studied shall allow us to know the implications which might be potentially generated as well as the natural evolution of those.

Keywords:
Family caregivers; Home care; Gender; Vulnerable populations