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24-07-2015 | Uitgave 2/2016

Quality of Life Research 2/2016

Burden of caregivers of adult patients with schizophrenia in a predominantly African ancestry population

Quality of Life Research > Uitgave 2/2016
Gabrielle Alexander, Charlotte-Ellen Bebee, Kelly-Maria Chen, Ross-Michael Des Vignes, Brandon Dixon, Richard Escoffery, Chazine Francis, DeAngelo Francis, Zahra Mendoza, Skyla Montano, Maxine Nelson, Stephon Ramcharan, Siobhan Richards, Maria D. Jackson
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A correction to this article is available online at https://​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s11136-018-02096-3.



There is relative inattention to caregiving burden in black populations in developing economies. This study seeks to assess the level of perceived burden and social determinants of burden of care in caregivers of adult patients with schizophrenia.


In this cross-sectional study, 115 dyads of patients with schizophrenia caregivers attending public mental health clinics were consecutively recruited. Burden of care was evaluated using the 22-item Zarit Burden Scale (maximum score, 88). Multiple linear regression model explored factors associated with caregiver burden.


Caregivers were predominantly females (75.7 %) and were on average 50.8 ± 15.0 years. Most patients with schizophrenia were males (65.2 %) and were on average 43.6 ± 17.2 years old. Caregivers showed on average, mild-to-moderate burden (score, 30.0 ± 14.7; median, 28.0). There was tendency for caregivers of patients who were parents or spouses to have higher levels of burden. In multivariable analyses, higher burden of caregiving was associated with patient’s inability to perform self-care (B ± SE, 5.12 ± 1.40; p = 0.0001), closer kinship and higher numbers of psychotic episodes in previous year. The length of caregiving relationship was inversely related.


Poorer functioning and demographic factors were important determinants of caregiver burden. Community mental health services should include self-care interventions in rehabilitation programs in Jamaica.

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