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Episode 21: An Interview With Tina and Tyrone Layson – The Cost of Being an Informal Caregiver

In the U.S., informal, family caregiving is on the rise. In 2015, there were 43.5 million, informal care givers. In 2023, there were more than 100 million  adults who are informal care givers. The direct cost of caregiving is nearly $44 million dollars, given the loss of 650,000 jobs and approximately 800,000 individuals who report absenteeism from work. 

Providing care to others is personally costly. According to research, 70% to 76% experience sleep problems. Only 23% of informal caregivers report “good” mental health, and 40% say that their caregiving responsibilities negatively impact their stress levels. 

Caregiving duties can harm workers’ lives. Balancing work with caregiving responsibilities puts a strain on caregivers in ways that negatively affect their social lives, marriages, employment prospects, working lives, and income. Many caregivers have to take off work to meet additional caregiving demands.  

Approximately 41% of caregivers report low overall well-being, about 32% more than non-caregivers. Only 1 in 4 caregivers report good physical health; 1 in 5 rate themselves highly at eating healthy and exercising;  and only 1 in 3 say they keep up with annual physicals and routine doctor appointments. This inattention to their own needs can introduce health risks for informal caregivers.

Listen as host, Tim Jordan, explores the costs of being an informal caregiver with Tina and Tyrone Layson. What are the costs that they experienced? Let’s find out!           

Resources for this podcast

Article:  (2024). Informal caregivers in cancer: roles, burden and support.  PDQ® Supportive and Palliative Care Editorial Board. PDQ Informal Caregivers in Cancer. Bethesda, MD: National Cancer Institute. Updated 03/12/2024. Available at:

Research Report:  (2023). Smith, M. & Kuretich, C. Informal caregiving: measuring the cost and reducing the burden. Society of Actuaries Research Institute.

Article:  (2019).  Caregiving for family and friends – a public health issue.  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Division of Population Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.


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Grass Roots Health is sponsored by the 1795 Group. Grass Roots Health is produced by Tim Jordan. Tina and Tyrone Layson were booked by Tim Jordan. Artwork by Danielle Procopio. Audio editing and mastering by Christopher Stoll of Audio Flare Recording, Toledo, OH:  Website design by Alex Brinkman, Green Tree Media, Perrysburg, Ohio

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