fex a., flensner g., ek a.-c. & söderhamn o. (2011) Self-care agency and perceived health among people using advanced medical technology at home. Journal of Advanced Nursing 68(4), 806–815.
Aim. This article reports a study of self-care agency and perceived health in a group of people using advanced medical technology at home.
Background. An increasing number of people are using medical technology for self-care. Few studies describe daily life in this context at an overriding level, irrespective of the specific sort of technology. A connection between self-care, perceived health and sense of coherence has previously been implied.
Methods. A descriptive, comparative, cross-sectional quantitative design was used. Data were collected from a questionnaire during the winter of 2009/2010. The questionnaire addressed perceived health and daily life with medical technology. Swedish versions of the Appraisal of Self-care Agency scale and the 13-item version of Antonovsky’s sense of coherence scale were included.
Results. The questionnaire was answered by 180 adults performing self-care at home involving long-term oxygen, a ventilator, or peritoneal- or haemo-dialysis. Health-related and technology-related variables in daily life were mostly highly satisfactory. Perceived health was rated significantly lower among participants using long-term oxygen. Sufficient sense of coherence, knowledge of how to use technology, close contact with others and not feeling helpless contributed positively to self-care agency. Positive contributing factors for perceived health were being satisfied with life, having an active life and not feeling helpless, whereas age was a negative factor.
Conclusion. Daily life is manageable for people in this context. Long-term oxygen treatment and advanced age can be regarded as risk factors for perceiving ill health.