By Alexe Kalariotes
Caregivers and patients who commute from a rural community for their healthcare have different needs and burdens than other populations, according to the research being conducted by Dr. William Faux and Dr. Molly Stoltz.
“We are interested in the commute that people have to make for health care and are looking at it from the caregiver’s perspective,” said Stoltz.
They received a $7,500 grant for the 2013 summer term to conduct a series of interviews with rural health caregivers to better understand their needs.
Their research tells the stories of the many journeys and obstacles of health care through a different lens. The commute is physically and emotionally draining for both the caregiver and the patient, Stoltz said. “The caregiver has to be prepared for crisis and high-stress situations at any given time.”
“With the narratives we have collected so far there seems to be an applied area within which we can work,” said Faux. They are developing a check list for what to do in an emergency situation especially when a long commute is required.”
This study addresses a variety of different factors such as distance, time, and “care for the other” versus “care for the self,” he explained. The narratives and key themes Faux and Stoltz are discovering within this research can provide information to help future caregivers as well as future researchers.