Hawaii has become the first state to provide financial assistance to those caring for an elderly loved one. The Kupuna Caregivers Act provides qualified caregivers with up to a voucher of up to $70 a day. The voucher can be used for qualified expenses such as adult day care or assisted transportation, taking the pressure off of the caregiver.
In Hawaii, there are an estimated 154,000 unpaid caregivers. Many of those are part of the Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders community, where it is often expected to care for aging parents. This can take both an emotional and financial toll. Many in Hawaii hope to use the new funds to pay for adult day care so they can have some time for themselves.
Time will tell if Hawaii’s new approach can help ease the struggles of caregivers. Lawmakers have begun to recognize the emotional toll of caring for aging parents and are beginning to propose solutions.