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JD Power and Associates and Better Health recently announced a business alliance creating a health-related consumer web site. The site, www.betterhealth.com/jdpower, will offer consumers important information based on the results of a series of consumer surveys to be conducted on-line.
The surveys will cover such topics as consumer attitudes about managed care, patient rights, and concerns of frustrated health care consumers. The site will also provide consumers with quality rankings of health plans in 20 major metropolitan areas, identified by the MEDSTAT Quality Catalyst Program, a series of annual studies of health plan enrollees, administrators, and physicians. Additionally, using chat rooms, the site will enable consumers to discuss their experiences with other consumers and health care industry professionals.
JD Power and Associates is a global marketing information services firm specializing in market research, forecasting and customer satisfaction studies. Better Health is a major health care information Web site.
"Both of our organizations have the highest commitment to empowering consumers to be better decision makers," says Robert Levitan, president and co-founder of Better Health and Village.
The National Family Caregivers Association (NFCA) and Fortis Long Term Care recently issued a report indicating that those who provide intense care for family members are themselves at risk for health and emotional problems. "Caregiving Across the Lifecycle" summarizes a survey of NFCA’s 2,300 nationwide members.
With a response rate of about 35%, the survey shows:
• Sixty-one percent of caregivers have experienced depression since becoming a caregiver.
• Almost 45% of caregivers feel a sense of isolation, yet 70% reported an increased inner strength as a result of their care role.
• Caregivers experience a number of health problems, including sleeplessness (51%), back pain (41%), stomach disorders (24%), and headaches (15%).
The report also includes information about the characteristics of caregiver-respondents and the family members they serve, the impact and consequences of intense caregiving (defined as more than 21 hours of care per week), and implications of caregiving on the relationship between caregivers and care recipients.
Based in Kensington, MD, NFCA is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of America’s family caregivers. Fortis Long Term Care, in Milwaukee, is one of the largest long term care insurance companies in the United States. Copies of the report are available through NFCA at (800) 896-3650.