The Urban Institute's Health Policy Center sent this out today: "Brenda Spillman and Kirsten Black, in a report for the AARP Policy Institute, review and update trends in family caregiving to disabled elders. Unpaid, informal caregivers provide most long-term care in the United States, and family caregivers-specifically spouses and children-most commonly provide it. The report finds that the number of family caregivers remained stable between 1994 and 1999, a period when formal, paid care fell, in part owing to reductions in Medicare home health care following the Balanced Budget Act of 1997. As a result of the decline in formal care, elders receiving disability help in 1999 were more likely to be relying solely on informal care. Declines in formal care were larger for persons who had only a spouse available to provide care and for persons at higher levels of disability. The implications of these shifts in caregiving patterns are unclear as of this writing, but clearly important to carefully monitor.