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1.
BMJ Open ; 13(6): e070637, 2023 06 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20233763

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To quantify population health risks for domiciliary care workers (DCWs) in Wales, UK, working during the COVID-19 pandemic. DESIGN: A population-level retrospective study linking occupational registration data to anonymised electronic health records maintained by the Secure Anonymised Information Linkage Databank in a privacy-protecting trusted research environment. SETTING: Registered DCW population in Wales. PARTICIPANTS: Records for all linked DCWs from 1 March 2020 to 30 November 2021. PRIMARY AND SECONDARY OUTCOME MEASURES: Our primary outcome was confirmed COVID-19 infection; secondary outcomes included contacts for suspected COVID-19, mental health including self-harm, fit notes, respiratory infections not necessarily recorded as COVID-19, deaths involving COVID-19 and all-cause mortality. RESULTS: Confirmed and suspected COVID-19 infection rates increased over the study period to 24% by 30 November 2021. Confirmed COVID-19 varied by sex (males: 19% vs females: 24%) and age (>55 years: 19% vs <35 years: 26%) and were higher for care workers employed by local authority social services departments compared with the private sector (27% and 23%, respectively). 34% of DCWs required support for a mental health condition, with mental health-related prescribing increasing in frequency when compared with the prepandemic period. Events for self-harm increased from 0.2% to 0.4% over the study period as did the issuing of fit notes. There was no evidence to suggest a miscoding of COVID-19 infection with non-COVID-19 respiratory conditions. COVID-19-related and all-cause mortality were no greater than for the general population aged 15-64 years in Wales (0.1% and 0.034%, respectively). A comparable DCW workforce in Scotland and England would result in a comparable rate of COVID-19 infection, while the younger workforce in Northern Ireland may result in a greater infection rate. CONCLUSIONS: While initial concerns about excess mortality are alleviated, the substantial pre-existing and increased mental health burden for DCWs will require investment to provide long-term support to the sector's workforce.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Male , Female , Humans , Cohort Studies , Wales/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies , Pandemics , Information Storage and Retrieval
2.
J Gerontol Nurs ; 49(3): 19-26, 2023 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20231047

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic placed new strains on informal caregivers, who are already vulnerable to negative psychosocial effects due to demands of the caregiving role. The current study aimed to explore the early impact of COVID-19 on caregivers living with and apart from care recipients. Semi-structured qualitative interviews with seven cohabitating and 10 distanced caregivers of patients in a home-based primary care program were conducted from April to November 2020. A framework matrix was used to identify patterns in caregiver experiences. Cohabitating and distanced caregivers reported shared concerns about COVID-19 and unique concerns dependent on cohabitation status. Cohabitating caregivers reported financial worries, care recipients with dementia being unable to understand restrictions, and concerns about community business changes. Distanced caregivers reported communication challenges with cognitively impaired care recipients and challenges with visitation policies. During pandemics, caregivers' clinical and policy support needs may differ depending on their place of residence relative to care recipients. [Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 49(3), 19-26.].


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Geriatric Nursing , Home Care Services , Humans , Aged , Caregivers , Communication
3.
BMC Geriatr ; 23(1): 320, 2023 05 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20230668

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Due to the increasingly aging population in China and the changes in social and family structure, older adults' care problems are becoming more and more prominent. To meet the home care needs of urban older adults, the Chinese government has launched Internet-Based Home Care Services (IBHCS). Although this model innovation can significantly relieve care problems, more and more evidence shows that there are many barriers in the process of IBHCS supply. The current literature is mostly from the perspective of the service users, and there are very few studies on the experience of service providers. METHODS: In this study, we took a qualitative phenomenological approach and used semi-structured interviews to investigate service providers' daily experiences and the barriers they encounter. A total of 34 staff from 14 Home Care Service Centers (HCSCs) were included. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using thematic analysis. RESULTS: We identified the barriers that service providers encounter in IBHCS supply: (1) bureaucratic repression: unreasonable policy plans, harsh assessment, excessive paperwork, different preferences of government leaders, and obstacles caused by COVID-19 control lead to a shift of focus in their work; (2) profitability crisis in the market: high service costs, dampened effective demand, government intervention in setting prices, and parent companies' excessively high sales targets hinder the service supply process; (3) client-related challenges: the crisis of confidence, the dilemma of popularizing new technology, and communication barriers lead to rejection by older adults; (4) job dissatisfaction: low and unstable salary, heavy tasks, poor social acceptance of occupations, and lack of professional value reduce work enthusiasm. CONCLUSION: We have investigated the barriers faced by service providers when providing IBHCS for urban older adults in China, providing empirical evidence in the Chinese context for the relevant literature. In order to provide IBHCS better, it is necessary to improve the institutional environment and market environment, strengthen publicity and communication, target customer needs, and adjust the working conditions of front-line workers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Humans , Aged , China , Qualitative Research , Internet
4.
Appl Ergon ; 111: 104056, 2023 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2328212

ABSTRACT

Little research exists on how home care nursing personnel have experienced the Covid-19 pandemic. This qualitative study explores the work environment related challenges nurses and managers in home care faced during the pandemic. We discuss these challenges in relation to the Demand-Control-Support Model and reflect on how the organizational dynamics associated with them can be understood using the competing pressures model. During the pandemic, home care nurses and managers experienced both an increased workload and psychosocial strain. For managers, the increased complexity of work was a major problem. We identify three key takeaways related to sustainable crisis management: 1) to support managers' ability to provide social support to their personnel, 2) to increase crisis communication preparedness, and 3) to apply a holistic perspective on protective gear use. We also conclude that the competing pressures model is useful when exploring the dynamics of the work environment in complex organizational contexts.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Nurses , Humans , Workload/psychology , Working Conditions , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology
5.
BMC Health Serv Res ; 23(1): 492, 2023 May 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2326157

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic had a major impact on healthcare systems around the world, and lack of resources, lack of adequate preparedness and infection control equipment have been highlighted as common challenges. Healthcare managers' capacity to adapt to the challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic is crucial to ensure safe and high-quality care during a crisis. There is a lack of research on how these adaptations are made at different levels of the homecare services system and how the local context influences the managerial strategies applied in response to a healthcare crisis. This study explores the role of local context for managers' experiences and strategies in homecare services during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: A qualitative multiple case study in four municipalities with different geographic locations (centralized and decentralized) across Norway. A review of contingency plans was performed, and 21 managers were interviewed individually during the period March to September 2021. All interviews were conducted digitally using a semi-structured interview guide, and data was subjected to inductive thematic analysis. RESULTS: The analysis revealed variations in managers' strategies related to the size and geographical location of the homecare services. The opportunities to apply different strategies varied among the municipalities. To ensure adequate staffing, managers collaborated, reorganized, and reallocated resources within their local health system. New guidelines, routines and infection control measures were developed and implemented in the absence of adequate preparedness plans and modified according to the local context. Supportive and present leadership in addition to collaboration and coordination across national, regional, and local levels were highlighted as key factors in all municipalities. CONCLUSION: Managers who designed new and adaptive strategies to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic were central in ensuring high-quality Norwegian homecare services. To ensure transferability, national guidelines and measures must be context-dependent or -sensitive and must accommodate flexibility at all levels in a local healthcare service system.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Delivery of Health Care , Health Services , Qualitative Research
6.
BMC Health Serv Res ; 23(1): 499, 2023 May 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2324008

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Hospital at home (HaH) provides acute healthcare services in patients' homes instead of traditional in-patient care. Research has reported positive outcomes for patients and reduced costs. Although HaH has developed into a global concept, we have little knowledge about the involvement and role of family caregivers (FCs) of adults. The aim of this study was to explore FC involvement and role during HaH treatment as perceived by patients and FCs in a Norwegian healthcare context. METHODS: A qualitative study was carried out among seven patients and nine FCs in Mid-Norway. The data was obtained through fifteen semi-structured interviews; fourteen were performed individually and one as duad interview. The age of the participants varied between 31 and 73 years, and mean age of 57 years. A hermeneutic phenomenological approach was used, and the analysis was performed according to Kvale and Brinkmann's description of interpretation. RESULTS: We identified three main categories and seven subcategories regarding FC involvement and role in HaH: (1) Preparing for something new and unfamiliar, including the subcategories `Lack of involvement in the decision process` and `Information overload affecting caregiver readiness`, (2) Adjusting to a new everyday life at home, including the subcategories `The critical first days at home`, `Coherent care and support in a novel situation`, and `Prior established family roles influencing the new everyday life at home`, (3) FCs` role gradually diminishes and looking back, including the subcategories `A smooth transition to life beyond hospital at home` and `Finding meaning and motivation in providing care`. CONCLUSIONS: FCs played an important role in HaH, although their tasks, involvement and effort varied across different phases during HaH treatment. The study findings contribute to a greater understanding of the dynamic nature of the caregiver experiences during HaH treatment, which can guide healthcare professionals on how they can provide timely and appropriate support to FCs in HaH over time. Such knowledge is important to decrease the risk of caregiver distress during HaH treatment. Further work, such as longitudinal studies, should be done to examine the course of caregiving in HaH over time to correct or support the phases described in this study.


Subject(s)
Caregivers , Home Care Services , Humans , Adult , Middle Aged , Aged , Hospitals , Qualitative Research , Norway , Family
7.
J Health Commun ; 28(6): 335-343, 2023 06 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2319865

ABSTRACT

Home-based care messages were part of behavioral modification interventions to mitigate COVID-19 spread early in the pandemic. What remains unclear is the types of home-based care knowledge people have and whether different kinds of home-based care knowledge influence a person's self-efficacy and response efficacy in managing mild cases. Using a cross-sectional online survey, this exploratory study investigated differences in biomedical and alternative knowledge about COVID-19 home-based care and their association with self and response efficacy from respondents in Ghana and the US. With a total sample of 736 made up of 50.3% from Ghana and 49.7% from the US, the average age range was of 39-48 years. Sixty two percent were females and 38% males. Using chi-square goodness of fit tests, t-tests, and multiple regression for analysis, we found that US respondents had higher biomedical knowledge while Ghanaian respondents had higher alternative knowledge. Although self-efficacy and response efficacy were high in both countries, both kinds of knowledge did not independently improve respondents' self-efficacy or response efficacy. However, a combination of biomedical and alternative home-based care knowledge items predicted self and response efficacy. Health promoters need to consider ways of utilizing both knowledge types in a complimentary manner during disease outbreaks.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , Ghana/epidemiology , United States/epidemiology , Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice , Surveys and Questionnaires , Adolescent , Adult , Middle Aged , Aged , Home Care Services
10.
Leadersh Health Serv (Bradf Engl) ; ahead-of-print(ahead-of-print)2022 Nov 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2302404

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: This study aims to explore nursing home and home care managers' strategies in handling the COVID-19 pandemic. DESIGN/METHODOLOGY/APPROACH: This study has a qualitative design with semistructured individual interviews conducted digitally by videophone (Zoom). Eight managers from nursing homes and five managers from home care services located in a large urban municipality in eastern Norway participated. Systematic text condensation methodology was used for the analysis. FINDINGS: The managers used several strategies to handle challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic, including being proactive and thinking ahead in terms of possible scenarios that might occur, continuously training of staff in new procedures and routines and systematic information sharing at all levels, as well as providing different ways of disseminating information for staff, service users and next-of-kins. To handle staffing challenges, managers used strategies such as hiring short-term staff that were temporary laid off from other industries and bringing in students. ORIGINALITY/VALUE: The COVID-19 pandemic heavily affected health-care systems worldwide, which has led to many health-care studies. The situation in nursing homes and home care services, which were strongly impacted by the pandemic and in charge of a vulnerable group of people, has not yet received enough attention in research. This study, therefore, seeks to contribute to this research gap by investigating how managers in nursing homes and home care services used different strategies to handle the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Nursing Homes , Norway/epidemiology
11.
Med J Aust ; 218(10): 492, 2023 06 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2301089
12.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(22)2022 Nov 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2272265

ABSTRACT

Health care facilities have not increased in response to the growing population. Therefore, government and health agencies are constantly seeking cost-effective alternatives so they can provide effective health care to their constituents. Around the world, health care organizations provide home health care (HHC) services to patients, especially the elderly, as an efficient alternative to hospital care. In addition, recent pandemics have demonstrated the importance of home health care as a means of preventing infection. This study is the first to simultaneously take into account nurses' working preferences and skill levels. Since transferring samples from the patient's home to the laboratory may affect the test results, this study takes into account the time it takes to transfer samples. In order to solve large instances, two metaheuristic algorithms are proposed: Genetic Algorithms and Particle Swarm Optimization. Nurses are assigned tasks according to their time windows and the tasks' time windows in a three-stage scheduling procedure. Using a case study set in Tehran, Iran, the proposed model is demonstrated. Even in emergencies, models can generate effective strategies. There are significant implications for health service management and health policymakers in countries where home health care services are receiving more attention. Furthermore, they contribute to the growing body of knowledge regarding health system strategies by providing new theoretical and practical insights.


Subject(s)
Home Care Services , Humans , Aged , Iran , Algorithms
13.
J Gen Intern Med ; 37(9): 2302-2305, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2272191
14.
Rev Assoc Med Bras (1992) ; 69(1): 101-106, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2275277

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The nutritional status of frail elderly people receiving home health services should be evaluated. This study aimed to determine the nutritional status of patients aged ≥65 years registered in the Home Healthcare Services unit and investigate the factors that may be associated with malnutrition. METHODS: This cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted during routine visits to patients and their caregivers. A total of 161 patients were asked to fill in surveys asking about sociodemographic characteristics, patient history, and clinical status. Anthropometric measurements were taken from all patients. The Mini Nutritional Assessment Short Form was applied to the patients for screening purposes. Patients who scored ≤11 on the Mini Nutritional Assessment Short Form were then asked to complete the full Mini Nutritional Assessment form. RESULTS: According to the Mini Nutritional Assessment Short Form and Mini Nutritional Assessment tests, almost half of the elderly patients included in the study (49.7%, n=161) were malnourished or at risk of malnutrition. Analyses showed that those who had COVID-19 [odds ratio (OR): 9.423, 95%CI 2.448-36.273) and those diagnosed with dementia/depression (OR: 8.688, 95%CI 3.246-23.255) were more likely to be malnourished, whereas those with diabetes (OR: 0.235, 95%CI 0.084-0.657) were less likely to have malnutrition. Strikingly, those who were fed by caregivers (OR: 15.061, 95%CI 3.617-62.710) were also more likely to be malnourished than those with self-feeding ability. CONCLUSION: Malnutrition or the risk of malnutrition is common in elderly patients receiving home care services. Many factors can have an impact on malnutrition.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Malnutrition , Aged , Humans , Cross-Sectional Studies , COVID-19/complications , Nutritional Status , Nutrition Assessment , Delivery of Health Care , Geriatric Assessment
15.
Front Public Health ; 11: 1070182, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2287483

ABSTRACT

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly challenged all public social services, particularly home-based community care services (HBCCS). Aberdeen Kai-fong Association (AKA) is a non-government organization (NGO) in Hong Kong that systematically manages the challenges to HBCCS. This paper presents a practical example of the implementation and evaluation of the risk management process for HBCCS. Methods: Mixed-method design was used to evaluate the implementation of the risk management process in encountering the challenges from existing and potential problems to maintain and enhance HBCCS in four major areas amidst the pandemic. A cross-sectional questionnaire survey and three qualitative focus group interviews were conducted by AKA from 30 December 2021 to 12 March 2022 to collect staff feedback on the institutional risk management process in four areas. Results: 109 HBCCS staff members (69% aged 40 years or above; 80% female) completed the questionnaire survey. For resource arrangement and staff training, over 90% of the participants agreed (including strongly agreed) that they had sufficient and reliable personal protective equipment and clear infection control guideline and effective training. Over 80% agreed they had safe working space and effective manpower allocation. However, only 75% agreed they had received emotional support from the organization. Over 90% agreed that the basic services were maintained for service continuation and enhancement, the service users and their families trusted the organization, and the provided services were adjusted according to users' needs. 88% agreed that the organization had obtained support from the neighborhood. For communication among stakeholders, over 80% agreed they had open discussions with the senior management team, and the senior management team was willing to listen. Twenty-six staff members joined the three focus group interviews. The qualitative findings corroborated the quantitative results. Staff appreciated the organisation's work to enhance staff safety and continue advancing services during this difficult period. Regular in-service training, updated information and guidelines to staff, and proactive phone calls to service users, especially the elderly, were suggested to enhance the quality of services. Conclusions: The paper could help NGOs and others encountering management challenges in community social services in diverse settings amidst the pandemic and beyond.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Aged , Humans , Female , Male , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Pandemics , Hong Kong/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies
16.
Home Healthc Now ; 41(2): 78-83, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2262636

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused physical and mental harm to home healthcare clinicians as well as the patients we serve. As home healthcare professionals, we became acutely aware of our patients' suffering while simultaneously dealing with our own personal and professional challenges. It is critical that those who provide healthcare learn how to manage the deleterious effects of this frightening virus. This article focuses on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on patients and healthcare providers and suggests ways of developing resilience. Home healthcare providers must be able to manage their own psychological needs before they can assess and intervene with the multiple mental health consequences of anxiety and depression in their patients that can result from COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Home Health Aides , Humans , Pandemics , Health Personnel
17.
BMJ Open ; 13(2): e069623, 2023 02 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2262485

ABSTRACT

The aim of this scoping review is to provide an overview of the existing qualitative research concerning the lived experiences of children and young people currently in foster care. INTRODUCTION: Lived experience of foster care is an area of limited research. Studies tend to focus on foster caregiver retention rates, education performance outcomes, evaluations and policy development. Although these studies are important, they provide little insight into the everyday lives of those currently in foster care, which is likely to influence these previous areas of research. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: The scoping review will be guided by Arksey and O'Malley's approach to scoping studies. A systematic database search of PubMed, CINAHL and PsycINFO will be conducted followed by a systematic chain search of referenced and referencing literature. English-language peer-reviewed qualitative studies of children and young people currently in foster care will be included. We will exclude studies linked to transitioning out of foster care and studies with samples mixed with other types of out-of-home care. Mixed-methods studies will be excluded in addition to programme, treatment or policy evaluations. Following removal of duplicates, titles and abstracts will be screened, followed by a full-text review. Two researchers will independently screen references against inclusion and exclusion criteria using Covidence software. The quality of the included studies will be assessed by two independent reviewers using the appropriate Critical Appraisal Skills Programme checklist. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Information gathered in this research will be published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at national and international conferences relevant to foster care services and quality improvement. Reports will be disseminated to relevant foster care agencies, where relevant. Ethical approval and informed consent are not required as this protocol is a review of existing literature. Findings from the included studies will be charted and summarised thematically in a separate manuscript.


Subject(s)
Checklist , Home Care Services , Child , Humans , Adolescent , Databases, Factual , Educational Status , Qualitative Research , Review Literature as Topic
18.
Glob Health Sci Pract ; 11(1)2023 02 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2259994

ABSTRACT

During the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the majority of the identified COVID-19 patients in Chennai, a southern metropolitan city of India, presented as asymptomatic or with mild clinical illness. Providing facility-based care for these patients was not feasible in an overburdened health system. Thus, providing home-based clinical care for patients who were asymptomatic or with mild clinical illnesses was a viable solution. Because of the imminent possibility of worsening clinical conditions in home-isolated COVID-19 patients, continuous monitoring for red flag signs was essential. With growing evidence of the effectiveness of remote monitoring of patients, the Greater Chennai Corporation in partnership with the National Institute of Epidemiology conceptualized and implemented a remote monitoring program for home-isolated COVID-19 patients. The key steps used to develop the program were to (1) decentralize triage systems and establish a home-isolation protocol, (2) develop a remote monitoring platform and remote health care workforce, and (3) onboard patients and conduct remote hybrid monitoring. In this article, we share the pragmatic solutions, critical components of the systems and processes, lessons, and experiences in implementing a remote monitoring program for home-isolated COVID-19 patients in a large metropolitan setting.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Home Care Services , Humans , India/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Health Personnel
19.
PLoS One ; 18(3): e0282744, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2267243

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Thousands of Eastern Europeans find employment caring for older individuals as transmigrating live-in home care workers in private households in Germany. Studies have shown that the stressors threatening their well-being are multifaceted and include inequalities and a high practical and emotional workload, but research on protective factors is still scarce. AIM & METHODS: This qualitative descriptive study focuses on both the stressors and factors that promote care workers' well-being and contribute to their psychological resilience. In guideline-based interviews, 14 female and one male care workers were asked about their stressors and the factors that help them cope. RESULTS: Identified stressors included separation from their own family, strained relationship with either or both the care recipient (dementia) and their relatives (violation of worker´s rights and devaluation of care work), and permanent availability and lack of free time due to a 24-h care schedule. Resilience factors were both external and internal and included positive social relationships, self-determination, experience in care work, and intrinsic job motivation. CONCLUSION: Live-ins reside in an ambiguous setting, exposed to both structural and individual strains. However, external and internal resilience factors contribute to a generally positive attitude toward their job and indicate the agency of this precariously employed group. A socially anchored appreciation of their work and an officially controlled expansion of free time are mandatory to improve the working conditions of live-in care workers.


Subject(s)
Home Care Services , Transients and Migrants , Humans , Male , Female , Protective Factors , Interpersonal Relations , Germany
20.
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