24% of people have quit, taken leave to care for relatives: poll

Lacking the assistance provided by a long-term care system, nearly one quarter of working people in Taiwan have at one time had to take leave or quit their job in order to take care of a sick family member, a recent survey indicates.

The survey, jointly conducted by the 104 job bank and Taiwan Association of Family Caregivers in August and September, found that 94 percent of working people who responded to the survey had taken time off work to care for a family member confined to bed as a result of a disability or chronic ailment.

Twenty-four percent of respondents said they had taken unpaid leave or quit their jobs to care for a sick family member, according to the survey.

The poll also found that the average time span of such care was 5.6 years.

Asked about the support system at the companies where respondents work, half said their places of employment had a “work leave system” and only 23.7 percent provided “care support services,” including the organization of Family Day activities and subsidies for care givers.

The survey, which seeks to better understand what kind of care working people provide family members with disabilities or chronic ailments, was conducted from Aug. 18 to Sept. 17 and polled 1the job bank members over the age of 35 and in gainful employment.

A total of 913 valid samples were collected, with 100 from those who care for family members with a disability. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.24 percentage points.

The Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) government has listed the establishment of a long-term care system as a key policy focus as Taiwan is expected to become a super-aged society by 2026, with more than 20 percent of the population aged 65 and over.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel

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