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Keywords:

  • consensus;
  • cooperation;
  • elderly care;
  • leadership skills;
  • nursing;
  • politicians’ experiences

Aim

To describe local politicians’ experiences of an ongoing planning process for elderly care for the future in a medium-sized municipality in western Sweden.

Background

Elderly care is facing challenges because of an ageing population.

Method

The study comprised a total of eight semi-structured interviews with politicians. The interviews were analysed using manifest qualitative content analysis.

Results

One category (political consensus) and three subcategories (involvement generates security, trust in change management and confidence to create visions) were identified.

Conclusions

Political consensus across elderly care organisations could establish a sense of security for old people, their relatives and the staff in particular. Continuous information and support from different managerial levels is one way of implementing changes within large organisations. However, further research is needed to describe how to develop future elderly care.

Implications for nursing management

An ageing population requires cooperation across provider boundaries to further develop high-quality elderly care services. Nursing leadership during a change process is crucial to implement political decisions in care organisations. Furthermore, active marketing of the health care profession for elderly care is needed as well as new knowledge regarding old people.