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Influence of Emotional Caregiving in Presence of Social Support as a Mediating Variable on Caregivers' Stress of Cancer Children in Pakistan

Abstract


Increasing rate of pediatric cancer has shifted the patients from hospitals to the home settings. This shift involves the informal caregivers of pediatric cancer to face several social and emotional challenges that may result in caregiving-related stress. Stress process theory suggests a mediating variable such as social support in managing the caregivers’ stress. This study examines the stress of caregivers of cancer children in terms of emotional caregiving and social support using Berlin Social Support Scale, Medical Outcomes Study- Social Support Survey and Modified Caregiving Strain Index. This cross-sectional study involved 120 caregivers of children with cancer aged 0-19 years from cancer hospitals of Punjab, Pakistan. Multivariate analysis was conducted in addition to descriptive statistics. Results showed that emotional caregiving to the patients and caregivers’ stress were positively correlated and social support acts as a mediator in coping with the caregivers’ stress. The findings of this study exhibit the significance of involving multiple social resources while studying the process of cancer caregiving by illustrating the distinguishing effect of social support on caregivers’ stress of cancer patients.


Keywords

Cancer children, caregiving, social support, caregivers’ stress

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