Elderly wellbeing and alcohol - a tricky cocktail
Background: Older adults’ use of alcohol in nursing homes is a rising challenge, expected to increase in the coming 10-15 years. Alcohol and alcohol use encompass functions and consequences that go beyond mere health concerns and stretch into social, personal and institutionalized life. However, a continuing increase in the focus on life quality makes it difficult to be only critical of alcohol use in nursing homes.
The “A tricky cocktail” study encompasses four projects meant to illuminate quality of life in nursing homes among residents, professionals and relatives. The study is an interdisciplinary, humanistic study involving philosophy, psychology and addictions research developing both theory and methodology based on empirical data. The overarching aim of the study is to develop a product for nursing home practitioners to assist in balancing health and care-concerns with the residents’ quality of life.
Method: The study is a qualitative study based on observations and semi-structured interviews. It is conducted in close collaboration with the Vejle municipality in Denmark. Five sites in Vejle that have agreed to participate in data collection. The study consists of four phases: 1) exploration, 2) interpretation in collaboration with practitioners, 3) developing practice-oriented product, 4) implementation.
Phase one was conducted in 2018. It consists of 25 days of participant observations on the five sites. These observations served as a starting point for developing an interview guide. 20 participants were interviewed for 45-60 minutes based on the interview guide. In phase two data will be analyzed in different ways in the four projects, including: phenomenological analysis, linguistic analysis and value-based analysis. Moreover, data will be analyzed in collaboration with representatives from the fives sites. The presentation will include tentative findings from the analysis.
Project status: The collaboration between Vejle municipality and the research group was initiated at the end of 2016. The project received full unconditional funding from the VELUX-foundation in November 2017. The official start date was February 1st, 2018. Phase two – analysis/interpretation is about to be initiated at the submission of this abstract. Phases three and four will be executed in 2019 and 2020.