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Nurs Res Pract. 2012;2012:368356. doi: 10.1155/2012/368356. Epub 2012 Apr 5.

Action planning for daily mouth care in long-term care: the brushing up on mouth care project.

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Faculty of Dentistry, Dalhousie University, P.O. Box 15000, Halifax, NS, Canada B3H 4R2.


Research focusing on the introduction of daily mouth care programs for dependent older adults in long-term care has met with limited success. There is a need for greater awareness about the importance of oral health, more education for those providing oral care, and organizational structures that provide policy and administrative support for daily mouth care. The purpose of this paper is to describe the establishment of an oral care action plan for long-term care using an interdisciplinary collaborative approach. Methods. Elements of a program planning cycle that includes assessment, planning, implementation, and evaluation guided this work and are described in this paper. Findings associated with assessment and planning are detailed. Assessment involved exploration of internal and external factors influencing oral care in long-term care and included document review, focus groups and one-on-one interviews with end-users. The planning phase brought care providers, stakeholders, and researchers together to design a set of actions to integrate oral care into the organizational policy and practice of the research settings. Findings. The establishment of a meaningful and productive collaboration was beneficial for developing realistic goals, understanding context and institutional culture, creating actions suitable and applicable for end-users, and laying a foundation for broader networking with relevant stakeholders and health policy makers.

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