Perception of integrated practice in home care services

Margret Gudnadottir*, Kristin Bjornsdottir, Sigridur Jonsdottir

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: As a result of demographic changes, older people are increasingly living at home, with multi-morbidity and complex care needs. This calls for enhanced integration of homecare nursing and social services. The purpose of this paper is to describe the clinical collaboration, scope and impact of integration from the perspective of staff in a setting identified as fully integrated. Design/methodology/approach: In this qualitative study, data consisted of interviews with managers and care workers in social services and homecare nursing (n=14) in daily clinical collaboration, followed by five focus group discussions (n=28). Data were analysed using framework analysis. Findings: Although the homecare services studied were ostensibly fully integrated, the study showed that the process of integration was incomplete. Interdisciplinary coordination between nursing and social services team managers was described as strong and efficient, but weaknesses were identified in collaboration between care workers. They lacked acquaintance with one another, opportunities for communication and knowledge of the contribution of members of other teams. They felt unclear about their own role in coordinated teamwork and lacked a shared vision. Originality/value: This paper’s originality lies in the model of integrated care studied and its focus on actual care practices. The findings highlight that integration does not automatically permeate between different levels of service. Time and space must be allowed for conversations between health and social service teams to promote integration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-82
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Integrated Care
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 8 Feb 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited.

Other keywords

  • Home care
  • Integrated health and social care
  • Nursing
  • Qualitative method


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