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Informal Caregiving: Compassion in Action

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This booklet, developed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is about informal caregiving — unpaid care given voluntarily to ill or disabled persons by their families and friends. Informal caregiving by families and friends is the backbone of America's long-term care system. According to recent surveys sponsored by HHS, 52 million of our fellow Americans are informal caregivers. These caregivers provide help to individuals of all ages. Two important lessons can be drawn from the data in this booklet. The first is that the contributions of informal caregivers are irreplaceable. The second lesson is that we cannot take informal caregiving for granted. [28 PDF pages]