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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 30  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 47-54

Burden of care among caregivers of patients with bipolar affective disorder at the Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Calabar

1 Department of Psychiatry, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria
2 Department of Clinical Services, Federal Psychiatric Hospital, Calabar, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Chidi John Okafor
Department of Psychiatry, University of Calabar, Calabar
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/NJM.NJM_87_20

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Background: The advent of community-based care and de-institutionalization of persons with mental disorders have led to a progressive shift of care from formal health-care systems to informal care providers such as the family. This shift of care, from hospitals to the families, has led to a significant level of the burden on the family caregiver. This study aimed to identify factors which are associated with burden of care among caregivers of patients with bipolar affective disorder (BAD) seen at the Federal Psychiatric Hospital, Calabar. Materials and Methods: A simple random sampling technique of “yes or no” balloting was utilized to select 105 caregivers of bipolar patients seen at the outpatient clinic of the hospital. The selected caregivers (those who picked “yes”) were recruited along with their respective patients after obtaining their consent. They were assessed using a set of five questionnaires, of which three (Patient Health Questionnaire-9 [PHQ-9], Young Mania Rating Scale [YMRS] and Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale [BPRS]) were administered by the researchers on the patients whereas the remaining two (sociodemographic questionnaire and Family Burden Interview Schedule) were self-completed by the caregivers. Results: One hundred out of the 105 caregivers who were recruited completed the study procedure and returned properly filled questionnaires. The rates of objective and subjective burden on the caregivers were 79% and 74%, respectively. While the objective burden was associated with the patient's educational attainment and his/her scores on the YMRS and BPRS, the subjective burden was associated with the caregiver's monthly income and marital status, the patient's gender, number of suicide attempts, and scores on PHQ-9, YMRS, and BPRS. Of all the variables, the patients' scores on YMRS (P = 0.025) and PHQ-9 (P = 0.011) were the significant predictors of objective and subjective burden, respectively. Conclusion: This study identified the extent and factors associated with burden of care on caregivers of patients with BAD. Awareness of those factors might guide clinicians in instituting treatment strategies toward reducing the burden on caregivers.

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