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Keywords:

  • focus group;
  • home rehabilitation;
  • multidisciplinary team;
  • municipality;
  • older people

Background

There is a move towards the provision of rehabilitation for older people in their homes. It is essential to ensure that rehabilitation services promote independence of older people.

Aim

The aim of the study was to explore multidisciplinary teams' experiences of home rehabilitation for older people.

Methods

Five focus groups were conducted with multidisciplinary teams based in a municipality in Sweden, covering seven different professions. In total, 28 participants volunteered to participate in these interviews. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed according to content analysis.

Results

Two main categories, as well as four subcategories, emerged. The first main category, having a rehabilitative approach in everyday life, consisted of the subcategories: ‘giving ‘hands-off’ support’ and ‘being in a home environment’. The second main category, working across professional boundaries, consisted of the subcategories: ‘coordinating resources’ and ‘learning from each other’.

Conclusion

Common goals, communication skills and role understanding contributed to facilitating the teams' performances of rehabilitation. A potential benefit of home rehabilitation, because the older person is in a familiar environment, is to work a rehabilitative approach into each individual's activity in their everyday life in order to meet their specific needs. At an organisational level, there is a need for developing services to further support older people's psychosocial needs during rehabilitation.

Implications for practice

Team performance towards an individual's rehabilitation should come from an emerged whole and not only from the performance of a specific professional approach depending on the traditional role of each profession. A rehabilitative approach is based on ‘hands-off’ support in order to incorporate an individual's everyday activities as a part of their rehabilitation.