Aims and objectives. To describe stroke patients’ perceptions of their participation in the discharge planning process and identify correlates of perceived participation.
Background. Patients have the right to participate in discharge planning, but earlier research has shown that they are often dissatisfied with the information they receive and their involvement in goal-setting during discharge planning.
Design. Cross-sectional study.
Methods. The sample consisted of 188 persons (mean age 74 years, SD 11·2) with acute stroke who were admitted to a stroke unit at a hospital in southern Sweden during 2003–2005. Data was collected by face-to-face interviews 2–3 weeks after discharge using the ‘Patients’ Questionnaire on Participation in Discharge Planning’. This instrument measures perceived participation in discharge planning in three subscales: P-Information, P-Medical Treatment, P-Goals and Needs.
Results. The percentage of patients who perceived that they had participated in discharge planning was as follows: 72–90% according to P-Information, 29–38% according to P-Medical Treatment and 15–47% according to P-Goals and Needs. Age, education and performance of activities of daily living were significantly related to perceived participation as measured by different subscales.
Conclusions. Most of the patients perceived that they received information, but fewer perceived participation in the planning of medical treatment and needs of care/service/rehabilitation and goal-setting. Professionals need to pay more attention to patients in different subgroups to facilitate their participation in discharge planning.
Relevance to clinical practice. To facilitate and increase patients’ participation in discharge planning, methods should be implemented for goal-setting and identifying patients’ needs. Methods that foster patient participation may improve goal-orientated care, services and rehabilitation after discharge.