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Conceptions of Family Caregivers: Implications for Professional Practice

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  31 March 2010

Nancy Guberman
Affiliation:
Université du Québec à Montréal*
Pierre Maheu
Affiliation:
Université du Québec à Montréal*

Abstract

The formal sector's increasing recourse to families poses questions concerning the type and degree of participation that is expected of family caregivers and the conceptions that exist regarding them. This article examines different conceptions and their implications for practice, based on reflexions emanating from the authors' 15 years of empirical research on caregiving. A typology of practice approaches based on the various conceptions is presented including: the dependent adult approach, the caregiver as joint-client, the caregiver as resource and the caregiver as partner approach. Each of these approaches is based on a framework of beliefs, values and principles which shape policy and practice and have implications for how caregivers are perceived and served. The authors propose an alternative community-oriented approach which addresses the limitations of those which currently dominate homecare policy and practice.

Résumé

Le recours grandissant du secteur formel aux familles soulève des questions concernant le type et le degré de la participation attendue des aidantes et les conceptions qui existent concernant cesdernières. Cet article examine diverses conceptions et leurs implications pour l'intervention. Il est basé sur des réflexions émanant de la recherche empirique sur la prise en charge familiale menée par les auteurs depuis 15 ans. Une typologie des approches d'intervention qui découlent des diverses conceptions est présentée et inclut les approches centrées sur la personne dépendante, sur l'aidante comme co-cliente, sur l'aidante comme ressource et sur l'aidante comme partenaire. Chacune des approches soustend des croyances, valeurs et principes qui façonnent les politiques et l'intervention et qui ont des implications pour la façon de percevoir les aidantes et d'intervenir avec elles. Les auteurs proposent une approche alternative centrée sur la communauté qui vise à combler les limites de celles qui dominent actuellement les politiques et les pratiques en maintien à domicile.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Canadian Association on Gerontology 2002

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