(NEWS10) — Friday, February 21 is National Caregivers Day, a day to stop and thank the healthcare professionals and unpaid family and friends providing care for the elderly, sick, and disabled loved ones in our lives. Either way, these people are incredibly important resources to those most in need of a helping hand.
According to Caregiver.org, approximately 43.5 million people reported providing unpaid care to an adult or child in the last 12 months, while 15% of those respondents reported caring for two adults within that same time period.
Approximately 39.8 million people, 16.6% of Americans, reported caring for an adult with a disability or illness. 15.7 million adults reported caring for a family member with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia.
All told, the economic value of that unpaid caregiving totals in the hundreds of billions of dollars. In 2013, the AARP Public Policy Institute estimated the value at approximately $470 billion. That number has been steadily increasing over the last decade.
How can you show your thanks? A simple honest, in-person thank you or card is an easy way to show your appreciation and let them know you’re thankful for all they do.