Perceptions of Community Health Nurses on their role in organizing, coordinating and performing dementia care for people with dementia who live at home.
Berg, N. van de
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Background: By 2050, over one hundred million people worldwide will be diagnosed with dementia. In the Netherlands, people with dementia who live at home often receive care from Community Health Nurses (CHNs) or case managers dementia. Both professionals can play a coordinating role in organizing dementia care. The overlap in the roles and responsibilities of both professionals often creates uncertainties for CHNs. Aim: Explore perceptions of CHNs on their role in organizing, coordinating and performing dementia care for people with dementia who live at home. Method: A generic qualitative study was conducted using in-depth interviews. Fifteen CHNs from seven different regions in the Netherlands were interviewed. Data were analyzed with inductive content analysis. Findings: Four themes were derived from the data. (1) Responsibility regarding the coordination and performing of dementia care. CHNs described overlap in responsibilities in for example: Having contact with general practitioners. (2) Organization of case management dementia. The variety in how case management dementia is organized leads for CHNs to different expectations regarding their responsibilities. (3) Work experience. CHNs with more than five years of work experience had less need to involve case managers dementia for advice. (4) Communication and collaboration. Overlap in responsibilities could be prevented with improved collaboration and communication between both professionals. Conclusion: CHNs would like to be more involved in organizing, coordinating and performing dementia care. An unambiguous approach in organizing case management and improved collaboration and communication between CHNs and case managers dementia is necessary to create clarity in the responsibilities for CHNs. Recommendations: Further research is required on the perceptions of case managers dementia and people with dementia to better understand the complete spectrum of organizing at-home dementia care. Furthermore, home care services should employ their own case manager to create an unambiguous approach and clarity in the different responsibilities.