Comparison of the Quality of Informal Care of Community-Dwelling Taiwanese Older People

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With social structures changing and the average life-span of individuals increasing, Taiwan is experiencing a steady rise in its elderly population. Thus, caring for older parentsis an urgent problem. Many foreign caregivers have been hired tocare for older parents.However, measuring the quality ofinformal care has not yet been fully explored in Taiwan, particularly among older people who are cared for by foreign caregivers in home settings.


The purposes of this study were to understand the differences in quality of care for older Taiwanese and to explore the predictors of quality of care in two types of caregiving.


A comparative descriptive study design was conducted. The study was held in several community healthcare centers in the middle and southern regions of Taiwan. Study data were collected over an 18-month period between 2012 and 2014. t Tests were used to compare continuous variables according to the types of caregiving. Multiple linear regressions with group analyses were performed to evaluate the underlying statistical assumptions.


One hundred fifty-nine participants were included. The study results showed that age, activities of daily living level, and quality of care were significantly different between the two types of caregiving. Relationships with caregivers, social support, and depressive symptoms contributed to the quality of care in family caregiving, explaining 50.2% of the variance. Social support and depressive symptoms contributed to the quality of care in foreign caregiving, explaining 36.6% of the variance.

Conclusions/Implications for Practice:

The study results support that the types of primary caregiving affect the quality of care that is received by elderly Taiwanese. This study may be used as a reference for families whose family members need long-term care when considering hiring foreign caregivers as an alternative option to Taiwanese caregivers.

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