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Chronic Illness Often a Taboo Subject: Survey
Date:10/11/2007

likely as women (14 percent versus 7 percent) to have their spouse give them such advice.
  • Men have an easier time offering health advice to their spouse (28 percent) than women (19 percent). Women have an easier time offering health advice to their children (24 percent) than men (16 percent).
  • Thirty-four percent of respondents said the person closest to them with a chronic illness is a parent (34 percent), followed by another relative (16 percent), spouse (14 percent), friend (11 percent), sibling (8 percent), and child (6 percent).
  • Evercare offered tips on how to help family or friends with a chronic illness:

    • Talk to them in order to get an understanding of their goals. Get the conversation started by discussing events or activities they used to enjoy or future events they want to be part of, such as a family reunion. Once you understand their goals, you can help them achieve them along with health care providers, doctors or community service agencies.
    • Appoint an "ambassador" -- someone your friend or loved one feels comfortable talking with and respects enough to heed his or her advice. This person can help your friend or family member manage their condition.
    • Increase your comfort levels by educating yourself about the person's chronic illness. This will make you feel more comfortable speaking with them about the condition and reinforcing the advice the patient has received from their doctors.

    By 2020, about 157 million Americans will be afflicted by chronic illnesses, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

    More information

    The American Psychological Association has more about coping with chronic illness.



    -- Robert Preidt



    SOURCE: Evercare, n
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