Caregiving Proclamation Signed

Pictured from left to right: Mr. Kester Freeman, IMPH executive director; Governor Nikki Haley; Sen. Thomas Alexander, IMPH board member

Approximately 770,000 South Carolinians serve as caregivers for loved ones.  This figure is expected to increase as the number of South Carolinians aged 85 years and older will increase 101% in the next 18 years.  On Thursday March 6, 2014, Governor Nikki Haley signed a proclamation recognizing the critical role caregivers play in the lives of older adults and people with disabilities in South Carolina.

The proclamation supports the efforts of IMPH’s recently established Long-Term Care Taskforce to address the needs of caregivers.  The taskforce is being convened to assess South Carolina’s system of long-term services and supports and will work to create lasting improvements in that system by developing and recommending cost-effective, actionable solutions to current and future challenges.  Comprised of approximately 75 experts, practitioners and stakeholders from across the state, the taskforce is chaired by Mr. Joel Smith and is carrying out its work via four committees: Service Delivery, Providers and Workforce, Financing and Affordability and Access to Care.  While caregiving concerns cut across the work of all four committees, the crucial role family caregivers play in augmenting professional services is a special focus of the Providers and Workforce Committee.  This committee is co-chaired by Ms. Coretta Bedsole of AARP of South Carolina and Mr. Sam Waldrep of the Adult Protection Coordinating Council.

AARP of South Carolina is a vital resource for older adults and their caregivers throughout the state.  With caregiving as a national priority for AARP, the organization was instrumental in bringing the governor’s attention to the taskforce’s efforts on behalf of caregivers.  The new AARP report “2014 Caring for Yourself and Your Family: Opinions & Experiences of South Carolina Registered Voters Age 45 and Older,” highlights the role of caregivers in the state.

Click here to view the Governor’s Proclamation.



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