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Degeneffe, C. E. (2001). Family Caregiving and Traumatic Brain Injury. Health & Social Work, 26(4), 257-268.

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This article discusses the extensive challenges faced by those providing long-term care for family members with traumatic brain injury Areas reviewed include the nature of care needs, stress and burden experienced, and how families cope with care giving demands. This article concludes with a discussion of what social workers can do to reduce the demands of family Caregiving and subsequently, improve caregivers’ quality of life.

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) represents a significant and growing disability classification in the United States. On an annual basis, an estimated 1.5 to 2 million people are injured. Among these, 70,000 to 90,000 experience long-term functional impairments (National Institutes of Health [NIH], 1999). Moreover, many who would have died in the past as a result of their injuries now survive because of advances in emergency health care technology (Cunningham et al., 1999). Also, TBI constitutes a major focus for social welfare and rehabilitative services. Lifetime costs of providing long-term care services per individual can exceed $4.5 million (Livneh & Antonak, 1997).