Improving the Accessibility, Inclusivity, and Integration of Home Care for Older Adults by Prioritizing Equitable Institutional Processes and Policy Tools


Introduction: The institutional processes and policies that are used to structure the provision of home care can impact workplace relations, communication, and the ability to deliver “seamless” care. This presentation will describe policies and processes being used by Integrated Care Programs to promote more equitable delivery of health and social care to older adults aging at home.

Methods: Data was collected through 118 semi-structured interviews with program administrators, paid care workers, unpaid family carers, and older adults in five Canadian home care programs, analyzed using reflexive thematic analysis, and interpreted using a feminist political economy theoretical framework.

Results: The provision of free day trips for older adults is a means of increasing class-based equality. Techniques of supporting paid and unpaid carers, such as arranging for paid carers to take time off, providing carers with access to support for emotional labour, and formally acknowledging the work done by carers, reduces inequality among carers by ensuring that, regardless of their position in the power hierarchy, they feel supported and appreciated. This helps to create and sustain a positive organizational culture. Supporting the social engagement of older adults and their carers can help reduce both inequality among home care clients and caregiving burden contributing to a more positive working and caring environment for all.

Conclusion: When Integrated Care Programs adopt policies and processes that prioritize equity and equality, they are better positioned to meet the expressed needs of older adults, unpaid carers, and paid care workers for more accessible, inclusive, and integrated care.

Author Information
Krystal Kehoe MacLeod, University of Ottawa, Canada

Paper Information
Conference: EGen2023
Stream: Lifespan Health Promotion

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon