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AJN On the Cover

AJN On the Cover

Kennedy, Maureen Shawn Editor-in-chief

AJN, American Journal of Nursing: October 2011 - Volume 111 - Issue 10 - p 21
doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000406410.11321.cb
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Figure
Figure:
Our October cover depicts an often overlooked member of the health care system—the family caregiver. Photo by John L. White / KRT / Newscom.

This month's cover photo, featuring Merita Mitchell (right) and her mother, Addie Chunn, in Ms. Chunn's home in Dania Beach, Florida, depicts an often over-looked member of the health care system—the family caregiver. According to the AARP Public Policy Institute, more than 61 million adults were caregivers to an adult family member or loved one in 2009—providing the equivalent of $450 billion worth of care. Caregivers spend about 20 hours a week in this role, get little in the way of training or support, and often suffer physical and emotional distress. And although many caregivers work full time while providing care to their loved ones, many eventually have to leave their jobs to become full-time caregivers, often losing wages and their own retirement income. In this issue, you'll find part one of a three-part series, Supporting Family Caregivers, in collaboration with the AARP Foundation and funded by the Jacob and Valeria Langeloth Foundation. The series is designed to help nurses help caregivers. The first article, "The Hospital Nurse's Assessment of Family Caregiver Needs," addresses assessing caregiver needs and, like all three articles, will be accompanied by a video demonstrating the article's key points. The series is part of an initiative, Professional Partners Supporting Diverse Family Caregivers Across Settings, and builds on the work addressed in AJN's September 2008 State of the Science report, "Professional Partners Supporting Family Caregivers" (available at http://bit.ly/o9GZOD).—Maureen Shawn Kennedy, editor-in-chief

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.