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Cancer Caregiver Distress Unrecognized and Under Reported
Date:5/12/2009

Study Commissioned by Non-Profit Identifies Unmet Needs of Caregivers

WASHINGTON, May 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A national survey released today by The Wellness Community revealed many Americans who provide support to a loved one with cancer do not recognize themselves as a caregiver. In fact, only 20 percent consider themselves a "cancer caregiver," well below the national estimate of 60 percent.

This year, it is projected that 1.4 million people in the United States will be diagnosed with cancer. For most of these individuals, someone who cares about them will take on the role of caregiver. A cancer caregiver is anyone who provides physical, emotional, financial, spiritual or logistical support to a loved one with cancer.

Approximately 90 percent of those surveyed felt they were not very knowledgeable or only somewhat knowledgeable about cancer caregiving. This lack of understanding is also reflected among those with caregiving experience. In fact, more than 65 percent of people who consider themselves cancer caregivers expressed limited knowledge on the subject.

"These findings are incredibly enlightening," said Kim Thiboldeaux, president and CEO of The Wellness Community, an organization dedicated to providing free support, education and hope to people with cancer and their loved ones. "While the cancer community has done a remarkable job identifying and supporting the needs of people with cancer - now there is clear evidence that unmet needs still exist when it comes to supporting and providing information for cancer caregivers."

The study, commissioned by The Wellness Community with support from the Breast Cancer Fund of the National Philanthropic Trust and conducted by Lightspeed Research, reinforces what the cancer community already knows - a significant gap exists in supporting and providing information to the caregivers of loved ones with cancer. Of
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SOURCE The Wellness Community
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