Preparation for caregiving is improved through engaged interactions between stroke family caregivers and healthcare providers throughout the care trajectory. We explored caregivers' perceptions about interactions with providers in rehabilitation, and how these experiences affected caregiver preparation.
Seventeen caregivers, included in this grounded theory study, were interviewed during a rehabilitation stay and postdischarge. Data were analyzed using dimensional and comparative analysis.
Caregivers described interactions with providers on a continuum from collaborative to disconnected, and a range of strategies to enhance interactions.
Caregivers want to be actively engaged with providers during inpatient rehabilitation and collaborative interactions enhance preparedness and care satisfaction.
Family members should be assessed for caregiving capacity and interactions between providers and caregivers should be individualized to specific needs. Providers must also be aware that many caregivers are not active information seekers. They must engage caregivers who may not even know what questions to ask.