Content » Vol 51, Issue 10

Original report

Need for structured healthcare organization and support for return to work after stroke in Sweden: Experiences of stroke survivors

Gunvor Gard, Hélène Pessah-Rasmussen, Christina Brogårdh, Åsa Nilsson, Ingrid Lindgren
Dept of Health Sciences, Lund University, 221 00 Lund, Sweden. E-mail: gunvor.gard@med.lu.se
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2591

Abstract

Objective: To explore stroke survivors’ experiences of healthcare-related facilitators and barriers concerning return to work after stroke.
Design: A qualitative study.
Setting: Outpatient stroke rehabilitation unit at a University Hospital in southern Sweden.
Participants: A convenient sample of 20 persons admitted to Skåne University Hospital for acute stroke care (median age 52 years), in employment of at least 10 h per week at stroke onset and having been referred to stroke rehabilitation within 180 days.
Methods: The interviews were performed by focus groups, and the data were analysed by content
analysis.
Results: Facilitating factors were a tailored rehabilitation content with relevant treatments, adequate timing and a structured stepwise return-to-work process. A lack of sufficient early healthcare information, rehabilitation planning and coordination were perceived as barriers. An early rehabilitation plan, a contact person, and improved communication between rehabilitation actors were requested, as well as help with work transport, home care, children and psychosocial support for families.
Conclusion: Tailored rehabilitation content and a structured stepwise return-to-work process facilitated return to work. Insufficient structure within the healthcare system and lack of support in daily life were perceived barriers to return to work, and need to be improved. These aspects should be considered in the return-to-work process after stroke.

Lay Abstract

To be able to return to work after stroke is important for health and well-being and participation in society. In this qualitative study, 20 stroke survivors were interviewed in focus groups about their experiences of healthcare-related facilitators and barriers. Perceived facilitating factors were a tailored rehabilitation content and a structured stepwise return-to-work process. A lack of sufficient early healthcare information, rehabilitation planning and coordination were perceived as barriers. An early rehabilitation plan, a contact person, and improved communication between rehabilitation actors were requested, as well as help with work transport, home care, children and psychosocial support for families. These aspects should be considered in order to improve the return-to-work process after stroke.

Comments

Do you want to comment on this paper? The comments will show up here and if appropriate the comments will also separately be forwarded to the authors. You need to login/create an account to comment on articles. Click here to login/create an account.
Advertisement