The Many Costs Of Elder Care

Jacki Lyden in for Tom Ashbrook

The emotional and financial costs of taking care of elderly parents.

An increasing number of Americans are staying in their homes as they age and receiving care from a mixture of professional and family caretakers. (AP)

An increasing number of Americans are staying in their homes as they age and receiving care from a mixture of professional and family caretakers. (AP)

A new report belies the notion that Americans ignore the aged–in fact, some 61 million Americans care for a relative.

And if you added up all that unpaid labor, it would exceed Walmart’s total sales: 450 billion dollars.

Caring for the elderly at home is the ‘new normal,’ says the AARP. And its having a deep impact on our lives, as Baby Boomers empty their savings, and the phone rings at work: and its Mom, again. For the sixth time that morning.

This hour On Point: the caregiver’s dilemma.

-Jacki Lyden


Susan Reinhard, senior vice president at AARP (formerly the American Association of Retired Persons) and director of their Public Policy Institute.

Eileen DeGaetano, a caregiver.

Christina Irving, social worker at the Family Caregiver Alliance in San Francisco.


You can find resources for caregivers here at

You can read the AARP report here.

AARP’s caregiver website is here.

Yet more resources for caregivers here at

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