Hand Hear

Caregivers are relatives or paid assistants who consistently provide care for the elderly or people with disabilities. Spouses, friends, parents, or other family members usually take the role of caretakers, and the need for care is many times caused by a major health incident, such as a heart attack, stroke or injury.

Whether you are a caregiver yourself, or you know any affected individuals that need care, here are some relevant caregiver statistics that might inform you about the effect that this often ignored role has on our society.

Gender and Care Tasks

65% of care recipients are female, averaging 69.4 years of age.
The younger the recipient of care, the more likely it is that the recipient will be male.
45% of recipients between the ages of 18 and 45 are male and 33% of recipients between the ages of 50 and above are male.
Over 75% of all carers are female, and can spend as much as 50% more time offering care than males.
Male carers are often less likely to provide personal care. 24% has helped a loved one get dressed in comparison to 28% of women caretakers.
Of the 43.4% caregivers who care for an older relative, about 14.5 million are males.
Males may share more caregiving tasks than in the past, but females still bear the greatest burden of care.
While some studies show a fair distribution of care between males and females, females spend more time providing care than males.
Equal care is provided by both sexes between spousal caregivers aged 75 +
Many studies show that 36% of female caregivers perform the most challenging caregiving tasks, such as bathing or dressing, compared to 24% of their male counterparts.

Time Spent Caregiving

92% of caretakers providing 21 hours or more per week, have a higher burden compared to 16% of those providing less hours.
Family caregivers of individuals who suffer from dementia indicate spending an average of 9 hours a day providing assistance to their relatives.
Up to one in four caregivers works 41 hours or more each week providing care.
Family carers residing with those they care for, spend 40.5 hours a week caring for that person.
Those who care for a partner or spouse spend 44.6 hours a week executing caregiving activities.
Those who care for a child under the age of 18 devote 29.7 hours a week on care-giving activities.
An approximate 21.9 hours of treatment per week is provided by family members as well as other unpaid carers of people with Alzheimer's disease.
30 per cent of carers provide care for less than a year, and 24 percent of carers provide care for more than 5 years, and 15 per cent of carers provide care for 10 years or more.
Unpaid caretakers account that their caregiving responsibilities have reduced other positive activities in their daily lives by 27.2 per cent.

Elder Abuse

Significant levels of mistreatment are reported by as many as 25 per cent of elderly care recipients.
About 1 in 10 Americans aged 60 and over have suffered some sort of elder abuse, with only 7% of cases being reported to authorities.
There will be 24 unknown cases for every 1 case of abuse known to programs and agencies.
Elder abuse, including mild cases of abuse, raises the risk of death by 300 percent in comparison to unabused elders.
The medical expenses related to violent injuries in older individuals are calculated to add more than $5.3 billion to the country's annual health spending.


The average age of caregivers is 49.2 years old.
48% of carers are between the ages of 18 and 49.
34% of carers are over 65 years of age.
The average age of care recipients is 69.4 years old.
14% of care recipients are between the ages of 18 and 49.
47% of care recipients are over 75 years of age.
The number of care-giving hours increases with the caregiver's age.
The average age of higher-hour carers is 51.8 years old.
The average age of lower-hour caregivers is 48 years old.
Older carers are more likely to look after a spouse or partner.
Many carers of older individuals are getting older themselves.
On average, caregivers of recipients 65+ years of age, are 63 years old, and one third of them are in fair to poor health .


Race and Ethnicity

In the United States, individual adult caregivers are reported to be 62% White, 13% African American, 17% Hispanic, and 6% Asian American.
White caregivers on average, compared to other races and ethnicities, are older than their counterparts, being approximately 52.5 years of age.
Hispanic and African-American caregivers experience greater care burdens and demands, and on average, spend more time providing care than their White or Asian-American counterparts.
About half of African-American caregivers provide care for more than one elderly person, or care for an elderly person and a younger person under the age of 18 years.
The care recipient needs vary according to race and ethnicity: African-American caretakers are more likely to help with more than three Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) than White or Asian-American caregivers.

Caregiving Tasks

Caretakers spend an average of 13 days a month on tasks like shopping, preparing food, house cleaning, laundry, transport and administering medication.
Of family caretakers who provide chronic care, 46% carry out medical and nursing duties, and over 96% help with daily living activities or instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs).
57% of caretakers say that they have no choice in carrying out clinical activities, and that this deprivation of choice is self-imposed.
43% of caregivers believe that these activities are their individual responsibility because nobody else can do them, or because insurance will not provide professional help.
12% of carers report being pressured by the care recipients to perform certain activities, and 8% report being pressured by another relative to perform these tasks.
Caregivers indicate having considerable decision-making power when it comes to monitoring the health of the caregiver (66%), Communicating on behalf of the patient with medical professionals (63%), Acting as the care recipient's representative or advocate (50%).

Relationships between Caregivers and Care Recipients

85% of caregivers care for a family member or loved one.
42% of caregivers take care of a parent - 31% care for their mother, and 11% care for their father.
15% of caretakers provide care for a non-relative.
Parental care remains the primary care circumstance for mid-life caretakers, with 70% of them being between 50 and 64 years of age.
48% of care recipients live in their own home, and 35% live in their caretaker’s home.
Only 31% of care recipients live alone.


A total of 5.5 million caregivers in the United States take care of former or current military members.
96% of caretakers of veterans are female, and 70% care for their spouse or partner.
30% of caregivers of veterans provide care for 10 years+, in comparison to 15% of caregivers in the U.S.
Military caretakers are more likely to be hired after the September 11 attacks.
Veteran care recipients after 9/11 are more likely to be uninsured.
29% of veterans experience Traumatic Brain Injury more frequently.