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1.  From risky to safer home care: health care assistants striving to overcome a lack of training, supervision, and support 
Patients receiving home care are becoming increasingly dependent upon competent caregivers’ 24-h availability due to their substantial care needs, often with advanced care and home care technology included. In Sweden, care is often carried out by municipality-employed paraprofessionals such as health care assistants (HC assistants) with limited or no health care training, performing advanced care without formal training or support. The aim of this study was to investigate the work experience of the HC assistants and to explore how they manage when delivering 24-h home care to patients with substantial care needs. Grounded theory methodology involving multiple data sources comprising interviews with HC assistants (n=19) and field observations in patients’ homes was used to collect data and constant comparative analysis was used for analysis. The initial analysis revealed a number of barriers, competence gap; trapped in the home setting; poor supervision and unconnected to the patient care system, describing the risks associated with the situations of HC assistants working in home care, thus affecting their working conditions as well as the patient care. The core process identified was the HC assistants’ strivings to combine safe home care with good working conditions by using compensatory processes. The four identified compensatory processes were: day-by-day learning; balancing relations with the patient; self-managing; and navigating the patient care system. By actively employing the compensatory processes, the HC assistants could be said to adopt an inclusive approach, by compensating for their own barriers as well as those of their colleagues’ and taking overall responsibility for their workplace. In conclusion, the importance of supporting HC assistants in relation to their needs for training, supervision,and support from health care professionals must be addressed when organising 24-h home care to patients with substantial care needs in the future.
PMCID: PMC3664060  PMID: 23706410
Home care; home care technology; paraprofessional caregivers; training needs; grounded theory
2.  Being in-between and lost in the discharge process—An excursus of two empirical studies of older persons’, their relatives’, and care professionals’ experience 
The discharge process (DP) is full of well-known risks, and a comprehensive and well-executed DP is especially important for older people with multiple health problems and continuing care needs, as well as for their relatives. Few studies focus on the experiences with the DP by older people in need of home care nursing and their relatives. Therefore, the aim was to deepen the understanding of the DP as a phenomenon described by older people, their relatives, and care professionals. The method is an excursus of the findings of two previously published research studies. By using the Reflective Lifeworld Research approach, the empirical findings were further interpreted with lifeworld theory. The results describe the essential meaning of the phenomenon of DP in relation to healthcare needs. The illness and the DP can be viewed as a course of action where the familiar becomes unfamiliar for older people and their relatives, entailing an insecure future existence characterized by the experience of being in-between. The DP is marked by bodily and existential needs. The older persons and their relatives are lost in the hospital context and trying to influence life and adapt to life circumstances, while being relentlessly dependent on care professionals. Care professionals work from both an organizational and a medical approach. Disharmony and disagreement seem to arise easily among the professionals regarding the planning negatively affecting the patients and their relatives.
More efforts are needed in the DP to empower older people and their relatives to go on with their life at home. The caring practice needs to more clearly meet and address the individual needs of older people and their relatives and their understanding of their illness. It needs to give them lifeworld and life goals to alleviate their suffering and to help them adjust to their new situation.
PMCID: PMC3492806  PMID: 23151391
Discharge process; lifeworld; older person; relative; caring practice
3.  Patients in 24-hour home care striving for control and safety 
BMC Nursing  2012;11:9.
This article concerns Swedish patients receiving 24-hour home care from health care assistants (HC assistants) employed by the municipality. Home care is a complex interactive process involving the patient, family, HC assistants as well as professional care providers. Previous studies exploring patient perspectives on home care have been based mainly on patient interviews. In contrast, the present study took a broad perspective on patients’ experiences and thoughts by combining field observations on care situations with patient and HC assistant interviews. The aim of the study presented in this article was to promote a new and broadened understanding of patients receiving 24-hour home care by constructing a theoretical model to illuminate their main concern.
Field observations and semi-structured interviews were conducted with four patients receiving 24-hour home care and their HC assistants. Grounded theory methodology was used.
The core process identified was Grasping the lifeline, which describes compensatory processes through which patients strived for control and safe care when experiencing a number of exposed states due to inadequate home care. Patients tried to take control by selecting their own HC assistants and sought safe hands by instructing untrained HC assistants in care procedures. When navigating the care system, the patients maintained contacts with professional care providers and coordinated their own care. When necessary, a devoted HC assistant could take over the navigating role. The results are illuminated in a theoretical model.
The results accentuate the importance to patients of participating in their own care, especially in the selection of HC assistants. The model illustrates some challenging areas for improvement within the organisation of 24-hour home care, such as personnel continuity and competence, collaboration, and routines for acute care. Furthermore, it may be used as a basis for reflection during the planning of care for individual patients within home care.
PMCID: PMC3482607  PMID: 22697419
4.  Nurses' preparedness to care for women exposed to Intimate Partner Violence: a quantitative study in primary health care 
BMC Nursing  2012;11:1.
Intimate partner violence (IPV) has a deep impact on women's health. Nurses working in primary health care need to be prepared to identify victims and offer appropriate interventions, since IPV is often seen in primary health care. The aim of the study was to assess nurses' preparedness to identify and provide nursing care to women exposed to IPV who attend primary health care.
Data was collected using a questionnaire to nurses at the primary health care centres. The response rate was 69.3%. Logistic regression analysis was used to test relationships among variables.
Shortcomings were found regarding preparedness among nurses. They lacked organisational support e.g. guidelines, collaboration with others and knowledge regarding the extensiveness of IPV. Only half of them always asked women about violence and mostly when a woman was physically injured. They felt difficulties to know how to ask and if they identified violence they mostly offered the women a doctor's appointment. Feeling prepared was connected to obtaining knowledge by themselves and also to identifying women exposed to IPV.
The majority of the nurses were found to be quiet unprepared to provide nursing care to women exposed to IPV. Consequences might be treatment of symptoms but unidentified abuse and more and unnecessary suffering for these women. Improvements are needed on both at the level of the organisation and individual.
PMCID: PMC3293728  PMID: 22233776
5.  Family physicians' experiences when collaborating with district nurses in home care-based medical treatment. A grounded theory study 
BMC Family Practice  2010;11:82.
This article concerns Swedish family physicians' (FPs) experiences collaborating with district nurses (DNs) when the DNs provide medical treatment for home care patients. The aim was to develop a model to illuminate this process from the FPs' perspective.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 13 FPs concerning one of their patients with home care by a DN. The interview focused on one patient's treatment and care by different care providers and the collaboration among them. Grounded theory methodology (GTM) was used in the analyses.
It was essential for FPs to collaborate with and rely on DNs in the medical treatment of home care patients. According to the FPs, factors such as the disease, FPs' working conditions and attitude determined how much of the initiative in this treatment FPs retained or left to DNs. Depending on the circumstances, two different roles were adopted by the individual FPs: medical conductors who retain the initiative and medical consultants who leave the initiative to DNs. Factors as the disease, DNs' attitudes towards collaboration and DNs' working conditions influenced whether or not the FPs felt that grounds for relying on DNs were satisfactory. Regardless of the role of the FP, conditions for medical treatment were judged by the FPs to be good enough when the grounds for relying on the DN were satisfactory and problematic when they were not.
In the role of conductor, the FP will identify when the grounds for relying on the DN are unsatisfactory and be able to take action, but in the role of consultant the FP will not detect this, leaving home care patients without appropriate support. Only when there are satisfactory grounds for relying on the DN, will conditions for providing home care medical treatment be good enough when the FP adopts a consultative role.
PMCID: PMC2984454  PMID: 20979649
6.  Watchfully checking rapport with the Primary Child Health Care nurses - a theoretical model from the perspective of parents of foreign origin 
BMC Nursing  2010;9:14.
Worldwide, multicultural interaction within health care seems to be challenging and problematic. This is also true among Primary Child Health Care nurses (PCHC nurses) in the Swedish Primary Child Health Care services (PCHC services). Therefore, there was a need to investigate the parents' perspective in-depth.
The aim of the study was to construct a theoretical model that could promote further understanding of the variety of experiences of parents of foreign origin regarding their interaction with the PCHC nurses at PCHC services.
The study used Grounded Theory Methodology. Twenty-one parents of foreign origin in contact with PCHC servicies were interviewed.
In our study parents were watchfully checking rapport, i.e. if they could perceive sympathy and understanding from the PCHC nurses. This was done by checking the nurse's demeanour and signs of judgement. From these interviews we created a theoretical model illustrating the interactive process between parents and PCHC nurses.
We found it to be of utmost importance for parents to be certain that it was possible to establish rapport with the PCHC nurse. If not, disruptions in the child's attendance at PCHC services could result. PCHC nurses can use the theoretical model resulting from this study as a basis for understanding parents, avoiding a demeanour and judgements that may cause misunderstandings thus promoting high-quality interaction in PCHC services.
PMCID: PMC2918611  PMID: 20646287
7.  Family physicians' effort to stay in charge of the medical treatment when patients have home care by district nurses. A grounded theory study 
BMC Family Practice  2009;10:45.
District nurses (DNs) provide home care for old persons with a mixture of chronic diseases, symptoms and reduced functional ability. Family physicians (FPs) have been criticised for their lack of involvement in this care. The aim of this study was to obtain increased knowledge concerning the FP's experience of providing medical treatment for patients with home care provided by DNs by developing a theoretical model that elucidates how FPs handle the problems they encounter regarding the individual patients and their conditions.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 13 Swedish FPs concerning one of their registered patients with home care by a DN, and the treatment of this patient. Grounded theory methodology (GTM) was used in the analyses.
The core category was the effort to stay in charge of the medical treatment. This involved three types of problems: gaining sufficient insight, making adequate decisions, and maintaining appropriate medical treatment. For three categories of patients, the FPs had problems staying in charge. Patients with reduced functional ability had problems providing information and maintaining treatment. Patients who were "fixed in their ways" did not provide information and did not comply with recommendations, and for patients with complex conditions, making adequate decisions could be problematic. To overcome the problems, four different strategies were used: relying on information from others, supporting close observation and follow-up by others, being constantly ready to change the goal of the treatment, and relying on others to provide treatment.
The patients in this study differed from most other patients seen at the healthcare centre as the consultation with the patient could not provide the usual foundation for decisions concerning medical treatment. Information from and collaboration with the DN and other home care providers was essential for the FP's effort to stay in charge of the medical treatment. The complexity of the situation made it problematic for the FP to make adequate decisions about the goal of the medical treatment. The goal of the treatment had to be constantly evaluated based on information from the DN and other care providers, and thus this information was absolutely crucial.
PMCID: PMC2709922  PMID: 19545441

Results 1-7 (7)