AMERICUS Ga. (May 24, 2011)–Johnson & Johnson has awarded nearly $430,000 in grant funding to Georgia Southwestern State University’s Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving (RCI). The funds will finance and expand the RCI’s newest initiative, the National Quality Caregiving Network (NQCN).
Johnson & Johnson has shown its dedication to supporting family caregivers across the nation through its partnership with the RCI since 2001. The enrichment and expansion of the NQCN will further promote the concept of evidence-based caregiving practices. The Caregiving Network will convene an expert advisory panel tasked with the re-examination and sharing of lessons learned in 1) implementing evidence-based caregiving programs, 2) providing outreach and training to caregiving professionals, and 3) providing technical assistance to past and present Johnson & Johnson grantee sites.
“Family caregivers are a tremendous asset to our nation – they are the ‘backbone’ of our long-term healthcare system,” said Dr. Leisa Easom, interim RCI executive director. “These caregivers provide a valuable service within the family, but may do so at a cost to their personal health and well-being. Worth over $375 billion annually, our nation must move forward to support these caregivers and sustain them in their critical role. Substantial progress has been made in clinical research that has resulted in improved caregiver outcomes.
“Over the past four years, the generous support of Johnson & Johnson has enabled the RCI to facilitate and support the translation of this clinical research (evidence-based research) into communities of caregivers,” added Easom. “While there are a number of evidence-based caregiving intervention support programs that address the needs of the caregivers, more are needed. This is truly an exciting time”.
The expert panel will assist the RCI with identification of emerging best practices that lead to sustainability and scalability as they relate to evidence-based caregiving. Additionally, the panel will provide recommendations on which caregiver populations are most in need of assistance (i.e. returning veterans, sufferers of Alzheimer’s disease). This is an important component of the initiative, particularly with the growing number of veterans returning with symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
“Johnson & Johnson is proud of the way RCI keeps the caregiver movement alive with useful data and updated perspectives from the field,” said Dr. Rick Martinez of Johnson & Johnson. “I am excited that RCI is making a timely effort to bring the community and caregiver voice to research and policy discussions. This is the right direction for this field.”
The RCI was established in 1987 in honor of former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, a GSW alumna who serves as president of the institute’s Board of Directors, to enhance her longstanding commitments to family caregiving and mental health. Through research, education and training, the RCI promotes the mental health and well being of individuals, families and professional caregivers; encourages effective caregiving practices; builds public awareness of caregiving needs; and advances public and social policies that enhance caring communities.
Recognized as one of the best colleges in the South, Georgia Southwestern was founded in 1906 and offers bachelors and masters degrees as a unit of the University System of Georgia. GSW is located in Americus, Ga., in Sumter County, the home of former President Jimmy Carter and three National Historic sites.
Johnson & Johnson is the world’s most comprehensive and broadly based manufacturer of health care products for the consumer, pharmaceutical, and professional markets. The Company has its worldwide headquarters in New Brunswick, NJ, where the business was founded over a century ago.
Left to right: Dr. Leisa Easom, RCI interim executive director; Kerri D’Aniello, J & J Corporate Contributions Coordinator; former First Lady Rosalynn Carter; Dr. Rick Martinez, J & J Director of Medical Affairs for Corporate Contributions and Community Relations; Laura Granberry, RCI Director of National Initiatives.