HealthcarePapers 15(1) April 2015 : 23-27.doi:10.12927/hcpap.2015.24400

A More Nuanced Discussion Required

Neena L. Chappell and Marcus J. Hollander


Williams and colleagues make a valuable contribution to the home care policy literature, however, their arguments are not always convincing. Missing is a more nuanced discussion of research showing that even when governments provide more supportive services for older adults, families continue to provide care, and a discussion of alternative forms of caring that may arise in the future such as care from siblings and non-married older adults helping one another. Drawing on research pointing to several countries that offer caregivers a range of services would also have been helpful. Furthermore, it is not clear, as the authors argue, that the reason policy makers have moved toward providing for higher needs patients with fewer and fewer services for lower needs patients is a 'wait and see' attitude. Alternative reasoning is just as plausible. The benefits of providing supports to caregivers of children are well articulated but this does not negate the need among caregivers to older adults where some of the issues differ from caring for sick and disabled minors. Finally, action items for government are not offered but could have been helpful. Examples are provided.



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