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Older adults who receive home-based services, on the verge of passivity: the perspective of service providers


Background:  The increasing number of older adults will put pressure on health care services in the community. It is thus critical to ensure that services promote healthy ageing and participation.The aim of the study was to explore service providers’ perception and understanding of the conditions for participation among older adults who receive home-based care.

Methods:  The study design was a grounded theory, with six focus groups representing different parts of home-based care in two different municipalities. The data were analysed by a constant comparative method following the guidelines from grounded theory.

Results:  The findings showed how four different conditions influenced the opportunity for participation or could give a push towards passivity. Firstly, the timing of applications for services. Secondly, the older adults and their family’s expectations about participation. Thirdly, external factors such as adequate housing and assistive devices. Finally, the service delivery per se could constitute a barrier for participation, because the services often focused on passive help and ‘standard packages’.

Conclusion. The findings show how factors at the system level, the execution of services and characteristics among older adults and their family may contribute to the individual service recipient being on the verge of being passive.


Academic article





  • Norwegian University of Science and Technology
  • SINTEF Digital / Health Research



Published in

International Journal of Older People Nursing




Blackwell Publishing

View this publication at Cristin