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Pathways in Caring: Caregiver Education and Support


More than 25 percent of all adults serve as informal caregivers providing care for a chronically ill or disabled relative or friend over an extended period of time. While caregiving may be one of the most rewarding acts of love, it is a daunting task that can take an enormous toll on a caregiver's physical and emotional health and financial stability. For too many caregivers, caring for a loved one can be a confusing and isolating experience. Through Pathways in Caring, a Web-based training program accompanied by community-based support groups, caregivers can easily access the education and support they need to take better care of their loved ones and themselves.

Providing caregivers with the knowledge they need

While individual situations are different, common issues are shared by all caregivers. Caregivers need knowledge about the aging process, the effects of chronic health problems and how to access community resources. Additionally, they need good problem-solving skills and coping strategies, along with the ability to advocate effectively for themselves and their loved one.

Duke Community Health, in collaboration with the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, has developed a comprehensive Web and community-based program that provides informal caregivers access to the support and information they need.

Offering support and education keys for success

Pathways in Caring provides caregiver education and much-needed emotional support. Through low literacy point-and-click Web modules in English and Spanish, and community-based support groups, caregivers are able to learn about a wide range of caregiving issues including:

  • Physical skills such as safely bathing, dressing, and helping someone with compromised motor skills
  • Knowledge about medications
  • Wound dressings
  • Post-surgical care
  • Chronic disease management
  • Diet and nutrition
  • Community resources
  • Communication with health care providers

Pathways in Caring provides practical advice and guidance to caregivers to help them care for a loved one at home and information on how to maintain their own health. While the program provides an immediate benefit for caregivers, it can also spark an interest in a career in health care.

Building a strong team through a regional effort

Pathways in Caring was developed through grant support from the Fullerton Foundation, Inc.


  • University of South Carolina School of Medicine
  • Duke Division of Community Health

For More Information:

Call us at 919-681-8365 or visit us online at


Pathways in Caring
Duke Community Health
Department of Community & Family Medicine
Duke University Medical Center
DUMC Box 104425
Durham, NC 27710
Phone: 919-681-8365
Fax: 919-613-6899