Unpaid caregiving for people following hip fracture: Longitudinal analysis from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing

Toby O. Smith, Sarah Langford, Kirsty Ward, Rene Gray

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PURPOSE: To determine the provision and its change over time in unpaid care for people following hip fracture.

METHODS: Data were sought from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA) cohort. We identified participants who self-reported experiencing a hip fracture, who had clinical and caregiving data in the previous and subsequent two data collection waves. Demographic and clinical data were collected in addition to data on provision of unpaid care, who provided care and the frequency of needs being met.

RESULTS: The analysed cohort consisted of 246 participants (150 females (61%), mean age 78.9 years (standard deviation: 8.6)). There was an increase in the number of participants requiring unpaid care between the Pre-Fracture and Fracture Wave (29% vs. 59%), which plateaued in the subsequent two waves (56%; 51%). Although both spouse and daughters provided the most unpaid care to participants over this study period, there was an increase in support provided during the Fracture Wave by both sons and daughters. This increased support offered by spouses continued until Post-Fracture Wave 2 when this plateaued. Support provided by friends increased from 3% to 8% and brothers and sisters increased from 0% and 1% Pre-Fracture to 8% by Post-Fracture Wave 2.

CONCLUSION: These findings provide insights into who, what and how unpaid carers support people following hip fracture over time. Given the level of support unpaid carers offer, and previously reported carer stress and burden, undertaking clinical trials to assess the effectiveness of carer-patient support interventions would be valuable.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1249-1260
Number of pages12
JournalEuropean Geriatric Medicine
Issue number6
Early online date3 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Hip fracture
  • Caregiver
  • National Cohort
  • ELSA
  • Cohort analysis
  • National
  • Family
  • Fracture
  • Recovery
  • Care
  • Hip

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