• long-term care;
  • nursing;
  • quality care;
  • Taiwanese elder care

Aim.  This article presents the results of a qualitative study designed to explore the perceptions of Taiwanese elders about the quality of their care while in residence at a long-term care facility.

Background.  As the population of elders in Taiwan is increasing rapidly, quality long-term care has become both a necessity and social responsibility. Research related to quality of care has focused on structure, process and outcomes as well as perceptions of quality of care and life satisfaction. Few authors have considered residents’ perspectives within a cultural context.

Method.  A convenience sample of 22 residents, aged between 61 and 86 years and living in four Taiwanese care facilities, participated in semi-structured interviews. The data were generated during 2001/2002 and were analysed using content analysis.

Results.  Six key dimensions of quality care were elicited. The dimensions were: a caring attitude, respect for individual differences, emotional support, social interaction, a supportive environment, and accessible care. These dimensions are discussed within a cultural context supportive of family connectedness and filial piety, values underpinning care expectations of elders.

Conclusions.  The findings provide a foundation for increased understanding of the perceived gaps between residents’ aspirations about quality care and priorities identified in other studies. Additional studies based on these data are planned in order to generate a culturally relevant, psychometrically sound resident assessment tool to evaluate the quality of care from a resident perspective in long-term care facilities in Taiwan.