Original article
Transition to the family caregiver role in Portugal
Patrícia Fernandes Antunesa, Paulo Alexandre Oliveira Marquesb,,
a Centro Hospitalar do Porto, Porto, Portugal
b ESEP (Escola Superior de Enfermagem do Porto), NursID (The Innovation and Development in Nursing), Center for Health Technology and Services Research (CINTESIS-ESEP), Porto, Portugal
Recebido 03 Janeiro 2017, Aceitaram 04 Maio 2017
Abstract

This research aims to analyze the transition to the role of family caregiver (FC). The purpose of this study was: to identify factors leading the dependent person of family caregivers to the hospital urgent care (UC); to identify constraints associated with the ability to perform the FC role and difficulties experienced by FC in their ability to perform this role.

This was an exploratory, transversal, and descriptive study conducted in two stages with convenience samples. The first stage involved variables related to the dependent person and to the FC, namely to the caretaking process, in the dimensions: cognition, knowledge, perception of support, relationship with the family member, motivation, perception of physical health, perception of self-efficacy, identification of warning signs and management of the therapeutic regimen, underlying the Nursing Outcomes Classification. The study was conducted using a questionnaire delivered to each participant, 43 dependent persons and their FC. The second stage comprised a sample of 6 FC. A semi-structured thematic interview was conducted and submitted to content analysis, using the Transitions Model. Data were analyzed through descriptive and inferential statistics. The difficulties associated with the FC ability to perform were: knowledge, perception of support, motivation, perception of physical health, perception of self-efficacy, coping with the illness, coping with the suffering of the family member and fear.

Nurses must take special consideration to admissions of dependent persons cared at home by their FC. This will help to determine if the worsening of the patient's condition is due to the onset of symptoms disease related or is the result of the FC inability to deal with the dependency changes and constant demands.

Keywords
Nursing, Family caregiver, Transition, Dependent

Open Access

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