Caretaker crouches in front of patient

The COVID-19 pandemic is exerting even more pressure on family caregivers, according to a new survey by caregiving benefit firm Family First. 

A total of 83% of the 1,500 family caregivers polled reported their responsibilities increased during the pandemic; 71% reported having mental health challenges. More than half reported they were too burned out to do their paid job well, with around 40% saying they had left their jobs due to the added burden of caregiving.

“These ‘comorbidities of caregiving’ are a direct result of a simple fact: caregiving is a lifestyle, not an event,” Evan Falchuk, CEO and chairman of Family First, said. “Too many people are forced to decide between quality care for a loved one and their own career or mental health. Employers have a tremendous opportunity to make a real difference in the lives of working family caregivers by offering caregiving benefits that help their employees navigate the many challenges of caregiving.”

Nearly three-quarters of respondents said employers should do more to support family caregivers, with the majority believing some form of caregiver support should be included as an employee benefit.