The quality of life of regional and remote cancer caregivers in Australia

Goodwin, Belinda C. and Crawford-Williams, Fiona and Ireland, Michael and March, Sonja ORCID: and Chambers, Suzanne K. and Aitken, Joanne F. and Dunn, Jeff ORCID: (2022) The quality of life of regional and remote cancer caregivers in Australia. European Journal of Cancer Care. pp. 1-12. ISSN 0961-5423

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Objective: This study compares the well-being of rural caregivers with that of the general population and explores the potential drivers of poorer outcomes. Method: Patient–caregiver dyads (n = 241) residing in regional or remote Queensland, Australia, reported on QoL, chronic illness, caregiver burden, depression, anxiety and stress. Caregiver outcomes were compared with population norms and patient outcomes. Multiple regressions were conducted to identify factors associated with poorer caregiver outcomes. Results: Caregivers reported lower mental health-related QoL (M = 0.436, 95% CI = 0.410–0.462) in comparison with age-matched population norms (M = 0.556, 95% CI = 0.532–0.580). No differences existed between caregiver and population norms for anxiety, stress and depression. Caregiver chronic illness and higher burden were associated with poorer mental and physical QoL, depression, anxiety and stress (η2s ranging from 0.03 to 0.30). These associations were slightly stronger for male caregivers when compared with female caregivers (η2s ranging from 0.03 to 0.08). Conclusion: It is vital that efforts are made to improve rural caregivers' mental and emotional well-being. Interventions that support caregivers with chronic conditions reduce caregiver burden and take into consideration the unique experience of male caregivers will go some way to addressing this. Future research is needed to identify other drivers of health outcomes in this group.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Resilient Regions - Centre for Health Research (1 Apr 2020 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current – Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Psychology and Wellbeing (1 Jan 2022 -)
Date Deposited: 26 Apr 2022 01:27
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2022 02:54
Uncontrolled Keywords: anxiety; cancer; caregiver; depression; quality of life; rural
Fields of Research (2020): 32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3202 Clinical sciences > 320224 Rural clinical health
52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5203 Clinical and health psychology > 520304 Health psychology
52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5203 Clinical and health psychology > 520302 Clinical psychology
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 20 HEALTH > 2004 Public health (excl. specific population health) > 200409 Mental health
20 HEALTH > 2005 Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health) > 200508 Rural and remote area health
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