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Caregiving among Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Age 50+

The care of elders among Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) carries with it attitudes, beliefs, and practices that can be starkly different from those of the general population.  Since most AAPIs age 50 and older are immigrants, they have expectations brought from their home countries that may or may not be expressed, nor able to be met by their more acculturated children or grandchildren living in a different environment, and who would be facing the burden of care.

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In AAPI families, filial piety and respect for elders is a core value.  Physical family togetherness is desired and multigenerational households are common.  AAPIs are more likely to believe that caring for parents is expected of them.  In fact 42 percent of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in a nationwide survey were helping to care for elders versus just 22 percent of the general population.

AAPIs are more likely to take charge of caregiving for their elders, more resistant to place their elder in institutional facilities, and more reluctant to discuss end of life related issues than other racial/ethnic groups.

The AAPI community's caregiving needs include:  care of family elders, long term care insurance, resources and tools in caring for elders, transportation and savings to access services, information on support and available services, in-language services for some Asian ethnic groups, and culturally sensitive outreach and services for caregiving.

This report is a compendium of research information and data on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) at midlife and older in relation to caregiving. It was drawn from Census data, AARP research, and external sources for information on the current state of caregiving among Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, especially those age 50 and older. For more information, contact Xenia Montenegro at


Suggested Citation:

Montenegro, Xenia. Caregiving among Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Age 50+. Washington, DC: AARP Research, December 2014.


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