Perspectives on activities in nursing homes

Authors: Sandvoll, A.M., Hjertenes, A.-M. and Board, M.

Editors: stacey, G.

Journal: The International Practice Development Journal

Issue: Special issue


Abstract Introduction: Access to meaningful activities is an indicator of quality of nursing homes, and contributes to wellbeing and dignity. Lack of activities can lead to boredom, apathy, disruptive behaviour or lack of confidence or meaning. Recent inspections undertaken by the authorities in nursing homes in Norway show lack of activity provision, which is in line with research. This indicates that the government’s policy and new regulations to increase the level of activities in nursing homes has not succeeded, probably related to challenges in developing care practices. However, nursing homes should strive to incorporate meaningful activities for residents to occupy their time and provide a sense of purpose. Few studies have discussed the meaning of activities as well as the challenges in developing a practice focused on activities. Therefore, we want to point out some important perspectives which policy makers, researchers and practitioners can reflect on.

Aims: A scoping study was undertaken to discuss what constitutes meaningful activities as well as the opportunities to develop a person-centred practice focused on activities.

Conclusions and implications for practice development: The understanding of activities in a residential nursing home setting needs to be reconsidered, broadened and further developed. For example, what most people might recognize to be passive activity, may be interpreted by nursing home residents as an activity. Activities must be person-centred recognising and accepting individuals wishes. The goal is to transform practice cultures to enable person-centred ways of working.

Source: Manual

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