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Integrating people with dementia and their carers into service design

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to reflect upon the method of using a participatory action research (PAR) approach and offer some insight into the processes of integrated working with service users and carers. The Public Bodies (Joint Working) (Scotland) Bill, 2013 (The Scottish Government, 2013) is focused on integrated and partnership working within the systems of health and social care. The author begins with a person-centred approach and explore the value of placing service user engagement for successful integrated practice. Through these reflections on PAR, the author offers some new lessons about what integration means to practitioners at the front line of service delivery.

Design/methodology/approach – This paper offers insights from a practitioner-research project which the author conducted within the author ' s own practice. It is a reflection on the process of using PAR with five people with dementia and their carers in a research project on the use of music to increase wellbeing for both the person with dementia and their carer. PAR helps to gain service user views but supports service users and providers to work in an integrated way.

Findings – This paper offers insights from a practitioner-research project which the author conducted within the author ' s own practice. It is a reflection on the process of using PAR with five people with dementia and their carers in a research project on the use of music to increase wellbeing for both the person with dementia and their carer. PAR helps to gain service user views but supports service users and providers to work in an integrated way.

Originality/value – A person-centred approach to service user participation in the research process has valuable insights for the integration of service users in the design and delivery of health and social care. The insights offered here highlight the complex processes which make-up effective engagement with service users and carers. It offers concrete details on the challenges which practitioners may face when they work to integrate service users and carers into the planning process. It also highlights the benefits of shared problem-solving and control. Practitioners already play an invaluable role in providing integrated care. This paper serves a reminder of much of what we already know and do. It also asks us to reconsider the focus of integration as a person-centred process.

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Additional Titles
Journal of Integrated Care

Key Information

Type of Reference
Jour
ISBN/ISSN
1476-9018
Resource Database
Hmic
Publication Year
2014
Issue Number
3
Volume Number
22
Start Page
91-98
Language
English