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Changes in everyday life after discharge from day care rehabilitation

Author(s): Anita Tollén | Kitty Kamwendo | Ann-Britt Ivarsson

Journal: International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health & Well-Being
ISSN 1748-2623

Volume: 6;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 1;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Elderly | physical disabilities | geriatric rehabilitation | community-based | occupational performance | narrative

Community-based day care that provides rehabilitation (DCR) targets elderly people with physical disabilities. The goal of these programmes is mainly to improve physical ability in order to enable participants to remain in their ordinary homes. Knowledge of the outcomes of DCR is limited as well as knowledge of what it is that makes a difference for the individual. The aim of this study was to describe what changes in everyday life elderly persons experienced after discharge from a community-based day care rehabilitation centre and to give possible explanations for these changes. Fifteen elderly people were interviewed after that they had been discharged from DCR. A narrative approach was used for analysing the interview data. Four case stories constitute the findings, each of them with unique descriptions of changes in everyday life as well as possible explanations for these changes. The first case story described resumption of daily activities that made the days more eventful and meaningful. The second described how everyday life became an arena for exercising, which create confidence for the future. The third described how an increased sense of certainty and security in the movements led to an increased appetite for life. Finally, the fourth case story described both the stay at the DCR centre and the promise of a new period there as uplifting that made the days easier. Concerning possible explanations for these changes, the findings indicate that it was a combination of several events that together contributed to the changes. Examples were physical training, counselling about how to live in an active and healthy lifestyle, and socialisation with other patients in formal as well as in informal sessions.
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