Aurelija Blaževičienė, Alina Vaškelytė, Aušra Kunčienė
Patients with chronic health care conditions who require long-tern care are nursed at home, therefore, there is a shift in responsibility for their care from paid formal caregivers to unpaid family members. Aim of this study was to assess the role of informal caregiver’s in-home care from the community nurse’s perspective. Thirty-one nurses, providing home care services to patients with special needs requiring constant care, participated in five semi-structured focus-group discussions. The data analysis was based on descriptive phenomenology.
Three distinct phases in the development of informal caregiver–nurse relationship was uncovered: (1) the first phase is associated with the organization of home care in the family context, (2) the management of possibilities and challenges faced by informal caregivers in-home care phase; (3) the impact of home care on informal caregivers‘ quality of life and health phase.
This study result shows that in organizing home care for the elderly are lack of cross-sectoral cooperation and teamwork between informal caregivers and community nurses. Therefore, informal caregivers must accept a new role in life as a provider of care, advocating, and supporter roles. Furthermore, as a result of daily fatigue, the informal caregivers‘ quality of life is deteriorating and their social exclusion is increasing.
Raktiniai žodžiai: informal caregivers, community nurses, home care, qualitative study.