Hybrid Work and the Sandwich Generation of Caregivers


Sounds like ‘food for thought’. The term ‘sandwich generation’ describes family members who are usually between the ages of 45 and 55 and are responsible for raising their children while at the same time caring for their aging parents. Hybrid jobs on the other hand are arrangements whereby the employee has the option to work on premises for a specific period and also at home or elsewhere.

According to a recent article published in Entrepreneur, there are two opposing views about hybrid jobs. However, either view acknowledges that hybrid models are changing the approach to elder care.

While the role of housing facilities for seniors has remained unchallenged for years, hybrid jobs have now empowered the caregiver.

The Wall Street Journal published an article recently questioning whether “working from home” is responsible for slowing senior housing recovery (newsflash: it isn’t).

Proponents of hybrid jobs emphasize celebrating the time and money saved by not paying for unnecessary senior services. An extra bonus is the strengthening of family bonds.

Prior to the rise in hybrid jobs, the sandwich generation was attempting to manage a true juggling act of caring for children, aging parents, and their office jobs.

Caregivers are reporting ‘juggling relief’ and even gratifying endeavors.

A good example would be a woman we will call Lisa who in the prior work model would be working in an office at a fair distance from her parents and children.

If Lisa was working from home, she would be able to help her children with their homework and then participate in a virtual doctor’s appointment. Working within the hybrid model allows Lisa to conduct these functions from her home.

The traditional model would have Lisa racing home from her office to her mother’s nursing home while her children were calling her and also needing her attention.

The new model gives Lisa the opportunity to use her time more efficiently and to be home with her children. It is a critical change for families and businesses.

Note that the popularity of hybrids brought about a shift in focus and caused a slight decrease in the number of available senior facilities. This should be viewed as an opportunity for innovation and change.

Providers of senior housing would benefit from adapting to the ever-evolving needs of their customers.

Until now families had to rely on expensive senior housing for their aging parents while they coped with children at home and commuting to and from their office. Hybrid jobs have opened up a new world offering the flexibility to care for loved ones at home. It gives housing providers an opportunity to adapt their services and find new ways to support families on a part-time and full-time basis.

And lastly, there is the financial aspect with its significant savings. Instead of looking at it as a threat to the senior market, hybrid job models should be viewed as an opportunity for innovation and expansion.


Rose Duesterwald

Rose Duesterwald

Rose became acquainted with Patient Worthy after her husband was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) six years ago. During this period of partial remission, Rose researched investigational drugs to be prepared in the event of a relapse. Her husband died February 12, 2021 with a rare and unexplained occurrence of liver cancer possibly unrelated to AML.

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