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Implementing a continuum of care model for older people - results from a Swedish case study

Author(s): Anna Duner | Staffan Blomberg | Henna Hasson

Journal: International Journal of Integrated Care
ISSN 1568-4156

Volume: 11;
Issue: 4;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: older people | continuum of care | integrated care | implementation | qualitative methods | Sweden

Introduction: There is a need for integrated care and smooth collaboration between care-providing organisations and professions to create a continuum of care for frail older people. However, collaboration between organisations and professions is often problematic. The aim of this study was to examine the process of implementing a new continuum of care model in a complex organisational context, and illuminate some of the challenges involved. The introduced model strived to connect three organisations responsible for delivering health and social care to older people: the regional hospital, primary health care and municipal eldercare.Methods: The actions of the actors involved in the process of implementing the model were understood to be shaped by the actors' understanding, commitment and ability. This article is based on 44 qualitative interviews performed on four occasions with 26 key actors at three organisational levels within these three organisations.Results and conclusions: The results point to the importance of paying regard to the different cultures of the organisations when implementing a new model. The role of upper management emerged as very important. Furthermore, to be accepted, the model has to be experienced as effectively dealing with real problems in the everyday practice of the actors in the organisations, from the bottom to the top.
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