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"Coming home was a disaster, I didn't know what was going to happen": a qualitative study of survivors' and family members' experiences of navigating care post-stroke.

journal contribution
posted on 2024-01-30, 17:03 authored by Karen Fowler, Paula Mayock, Elaine Byrne, Kathleen BennettKathleen Bennett, Eithne SextonEithne Sexton

Purpose: Understanding navigational barriers and facilitators has the potential to advance equitable stroke care delivery. The aim of this study was to explore, using a qualitative study, the experiences of stroke survivors and their families as they journey through the stroke care system, both before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 stroke survivors and 12 family members during 2021 and 2022. Participants were recruited through voluntary organisations, social media, and stroke support groups. Data analysis followed a systematic process guided by the framework method with steps including familiarisation, coding, framework development, and charting and interpretation.

Results: The experiences of navigating stroke care were particularly challenging following discharge from hospital into the community. Barriers to stroke care continuity included insufficient appropriate services and information, unsatisfactory relationships with healthcare professionals and distressed mental health. There were particular navigational challenges for survivors with aphasia. Facilitators to effective navigation included having prior knowledge of the health system, harnessing support for care co-ordination, and being persistent.

Conclusion: Greater support for patient navigation, and person-centred referral pathways, particularly during times of increased pressure on the system, have the potential to improve access to services and wellbeing among stroke survivors.

Funding

Scenario and Intervention Modelling in Ireland for Stroke: Evaluating the effect of alternative policy scenarios and interventions for stroke in Ireland on outcomes and costs | Funder: Health Research Board / HRB | Grant ID: ARPP-2020-010

History

Comments

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Disability and Rehabilitation on 24 January 2024, available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/09638288.2024.2303368

Published Citation

Fowler K, Mayock P, Byrne E, Bennett K, Sexton E. "Coming home was a disaster, I didn't know what was going to happen": a qualitative study of survivors' and family members' experiences of navigating care post-stroke. Disabil Rehabil. 2024:1-13.

Publication Date

24 January 2024

PubMed ID

38265039

Department/Unit

  • School of Population Health
  • Centre for Positive Health Sciences
  • Data Science Centre
  • Health Psychology

Research Area

  • Population Health and Health Services

Publisher

Informa UK Limited

Version

  • Accepted Version (Postprint)