Caregiver perspectives on transitions to assisted living and memory care

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Caregiver perspectives on transitions to assisted living and memory care

This study describes family caregivers’ experiences moving relatives with Alzheimer’s disease or related disorders (ADRD) from their homes to assisted living facilities (ALFs) and subsequently to memory care units (MCUs). We also examined how these experiences differed between caregiver dyad types, such as adult children caring for parents. In-depth interviews with 15 caregivers were transcribed verbatim. Grounded theory identified themes. Constant comparative analysis compared experiences of caregiver dyads. Most caregivers recognized the likely need for future specialized care at the time of the move to the ALF, but did not recall receiving information about transfer policies. The ALF move was harder for spouses, the MCU move for adult children. Assisted living facilities can improve support for caregivers facing a relative’s MCU transition through education about advantages of MCU placement and information about transfer policies. Support needs during transitions may differ between adult children and spouses.

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