The third phase of Cuidar de Quem Cuida (Caring for those who care) has initiated. The project aims to support 240 informal caregivers from the north of the country, providing training, capacity building and personalized follow-up.
The initiative has the participation of CINTESIS – Center for Health Technology and Services Research, the Central Administration of the Health System I.P. (ACSS) and MAZE, and is promoted and funded by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and José de Mello Saúde; and implemented by the Center for Social Assistance for the Elderly and Blood Childhood (CASTIIS).
“Having closely followed the project since its inception a decade ago, we are excited to see this initiative taking new steps within a broader collaborative framework. Expectations are high,” says Oscar Ribeiro, researcher of CINTESIS, the institution that is responsible for assessing the impact of interventions on informal caregivers, as well as for overall project monitoring.
According to the expert, the objective is to “implement a training program for technicians from local institutions to carry out networked support responses to informal caregivers. To this end, the project foresees the involvement of municipalities to hold training sessions and workshops and the creation of a mutual assistance service and an informal caregiver permanent care office.”
In this third phase of the project, which runs from April 2019 to March 2022, informal caregivers will complete an assessment protocol in different moments during the intervention. “This assessment covers several areas (quality of life, anxiety and depression, perceived competence for informal care). The first results will be presented in mid-2020, followed by another three further stages of analysis,” explains the researcher.
“An average 5% improvement in the informal caregiver’s overall quality of life score is expected over the 36-month period of the project. However, we may reach more informal caregivers if the qualified municipalities identify more situations,” says Daniela Brandão, CINTESIS researcher.
Cuidar de Quem Cuida (CQC) was recognized as an innovative social entrepreneurship initiative at the level of intervention with informal caregivers, and it holds the first Health Impact Title in Portugal and the first in the world to support informal caregivers.
“This project is distinguished by its replication / implementation model of responses, which is based on the potential for social transformation and sustainability. It develops in a cascading format and part of the resources (human, physical and / or material) that are mobilized already exist in the community. In each municipality, a network of decisive operational partners is defined for the implementation of field support responses among caregivers,” explains Oscar Ribeiro.
The project has as social investors the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (FCG) and José de Mello Saúde, and it is co-financed by the Operational Program Social Inclusion and Employment (PO ISE), Portugal 2020 and the European Social Fund, with a global funding amount of 239,660 euros.