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Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2019 Jul - Aug;83:257-262. doi: 10.1016/j.archger.2019.05.005. Epub 2019 May 7.

A qualitative interview study comparing and contrasting resident and staff perspectives of engaging in meaningful activity in a UK care home.

Author information

1
Kingston University and St George's, University of London, Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education, 6th Floor Hunter Wing, Cranmer Terrace, London, SW17 0RE, United Kingdom. Electronic address: p1607544@sgul.ac.uk.
2
Kingston University and St George's, University of London, Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education, 6th Floor Hunter Wing, Cranmer Terrace, London, SW17 0RE, United Kingdom. Electronic address: rs198424@gmail.com.
3
Kingston University and St George's, University of London, Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education, 6th Floor Hunter Wing, Cranmer Terrace, London, SW17 0RE, United Kingdom. Electronic address: J.Wood@sgul.kingston.ac.uk.
4
Kingston University and St George's, University of London, Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education, 6th Floor Hunter Wing, Cranmer Terrace, London, SW17 0RE, United Kingdom. Electronic address: siankoskela@gmail.com.
5
Kingston University and St George's, University of London, Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education, 6th Floor Hunter Wing, Cranmer Terrace, London, SW17 0RE, United Kingdom. Electronic address: F.Jones@sgul.kingston.ac.uk.
6
Kingston University and St George's, University of London, Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education, 6th Floor Hunter Wing, Cranmer Terrace, London, SW17 0RE, United Kingdom. Electronic address: Micheal.Hurley@sgul.kingston.ac.uk.

Abstract

The provision of meaningful activities in care homes is essential for maintaining residents' mental and physical health, yet many do not get adequate opportunities to participate. This qualitative study explored resident and staff perceptions of engaging in meaningful activities in a residential care home for older people (aged over 65 years) in South London, UK. Nine residents and eleven staff members were recruited and their experiences explored through semi-structured interviews. Data were analysed thematically, and three themes emerged. (1) Appreciation of activity: both staff and residents were aware of the benefits of activity to physical and mental health, yet there was a lack of provision within the home. (2) Residents' desire for engagement: residents perceived themselves as active individuals who had previously enjoyed activities, and had goals that they wanted to achieve. This was in contrast to views of care staff, who perceived residents as inactive, lacking in motivation and sedentary due to intrinsic factors such as their age. (3) Impact of care home culture and physical space: staff and residents perceived different barriers to activity; staff reported they were often expected to take on multiple roles within the home leading to a lack of time to engage residents in activities, whilst residents perceived that the layout and design of the home hindered provision. It was concluded that comparing and contrasting views of residents and staff could assist residential homes to reach greater levels of shared understanding of activity provision and highlight particular areas to target for increasing activity engagement.

KEYWORDS:

Barriers; Care staff; Meaningful activity; Residential care; Thematic analysis

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