Caregiving and Family Support Interventions: Crossing Networks of Aging and Developmental Disabilities.

Peer-reviewed article
(2015 Oct) Intellect Dev Disabil, 53 329-45


Heller T, Gibbons HM, Fisher D


This scoping review addressed the following questions: (a) What types of caregiver interventions are being done in both aging and developmental disability research? (b) How are these interventions similar and different? (c) What kinds of outcomes do these interventions have? (d) What innovative approaches are these interventions using? and (e) What can each field (developmental disabilities and gerontology) learn from the other based on this review? The disability review spanned 20 years (1992-2012), resulting in 14 studies; the aging review spanned 5 years (2008-2012), resulting in 55 studies. Data from the final selected studies were then extracted and compared on research design, type of intervention (governmental programs, small-group psychosocial, and other), and outcomes. Generally, in both fields, family-support interventions benefited participants' well-being and improved service access and satisfaction. Increased partnership between the fields of aging and developmental disabilities is critical to future scholarship in caregiving for both populations.