Resources like home health care nurses or aides can, however, serve as a central point-of-contact to improve coordinated care, the research suggests.

After Jo-Ana Chase, associate professor in the University of Missouri’s Sinclair School of Nursing, heard her mother had successful heart surgery, she was relieved when her mom finally returned home from the hospital in the care of her brother.

However, she quickly learned her brother felt lost on the best ways to care for their mom due to confusing discharge instructions from the hospital and logistical challenges related to home health care services like wound care and medication management.

Motivated by her own family’s struggles navigating the often complicated American health care system, Chase is working with clinicians and health care providers to better engage family caregivers in providing coordinated care after a loved one returns home from the hospital.

In the new study, she sought to better understand the resources family caregivers currently use to help health care providers identify gaps in coverage and recommend resources to assist overburdened caregivers and ultimately improve and better coordinate care.

Read the full article about family caregivers by Brian Consiglio at Futurity.