Tele-Savvy is a synchronous/asynchronous psychoeducation program for caregivers of community-dwelling persons living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) designed to increase caregivers’ competence and confidence (mastery) in caregiving. Its overall efficacy was tested in a randomized controlled trial.
This secondary data analysis examined the caregiver mastery and psychological health (i.e., perceived stress, depressive symptoms, and burden) outcome of 153 non-Hispanic Black American and White caregivers (31 non-Hispanic Black American and 122 White caregivers) from baseline to 6 months postintervention. Given the difference in the sample sizes of Black and White caregivers, a descriptive post hoc subgroup analysis was conducted of 21 non-Hispanic Black American and 20 White adult children and grandchildren caregivers.
In the overall sample, Black American caregivers demonstrated higher levels of mastery and lower levels of distress than White caregivers at baseline and across all time points. Over time, White caregivers, but not Black American caregivers, experienced significantly improved levels of mastery and significantly lowered levels of depression. Within the subgroup analysis, except for a moderate effect size in the management of situation scores over time among Black American adult children caregivers, similar results were obtained.
The findings highlight the strengths and shortcomings of the Tele-Savvy program in improving caregiver mastery and reducing negative psychological health outcomes. Intentionally tailoring the Tele-Savvy program to certain racial and caregiving groups may hold promise in meeting the needs of more ADRD caregivers.