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J Natl Med Assoc. 2006 Sep;98(9):1510-4.

Caregiver intervention research: an opportunity for collaboration between caregiving investigators and African-american faith communities.

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Division of General Internal Medicine, Section of Palliative Care and Medical Ethics, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, PA 15213, USA.


The African-American community in the United States is rapidly aging. Because friends and family who care for these elderly individuals often do so at the expense of their own physical and psychological well-being, there has been extensive interest in the development of interventions to reduce caregiver burden and morbidity. Few interventions, however, have targeted African-American caregivers. Given the importance of religion for many African-American caregivers, we believe that faith communities could be valuable allies to research investigators. The primary objectives of this paper, therefore, are to: 1) summarize the literature on religion and African-American caregivers; 2) provide a rationale for why caregiving investigators and African-American faith communities should collaborate; and 3) present directions for future research. We present evidence to support our assertion that, not only could collaboration result in interventions that improve the well-being of African-American caregivers, collaboration would also benefit both caregiving investigators and faith communities.

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