The Key to Me: Seniors' Perceptions of Relationship-Building with In-Home Service Providers
Canadian Journal on Aging
Changing demographics and hospital downsizing have placed increasing demands on the home care sector. Many of those receiving in-home care are seniors whose chronic conditions require a collaborative approach. Both providers' paternalistic orientations toward senior clients and seniors' passivity within provider-client interactions have the potential to undermine relationship building. While the former has been documented, how seniors perceive relationship building within the home has received little attention. The purpose of this study was to explore seniors' perspectives on relationship building with in-home providers, focusing particularly on the facilitators of and barriers to this experience. Applying interpretive phenomenology, in-depth interviews were conducted with a purposeful sample of senior clients and an immersion/crystallization analysis strategy was used to elicit the findings. Findings revealed that seniors perceived relationship building as a dynamic process that encompassed facilitators and barriers at both individual and contextual levels. The interpretive findings afford several insights into building provider-client relationships within the in-home context.