Sweden: Promising Practices in Long Term Care

Banerjee, A., & Braedley, S. (2016). Sweden: Promising practices: Time for care. Promising Practices in Long-Term Care: Ideas Worth Sharing, 60-63.

In this short chapter, Susan Braedley and Albert Banerjee share an example of a reflection meeting that we encountered in a Swedish long-term care facility. It was a simple ad hoc meeting that allowed staff to figure out how to cut the hair of a resident who didn’t like to have her hair cut. It needed to happen quickly to deal with the fact the resident’s daughter would be arriving shortly for lunch and she gets upset if her mom’s hair is not freshly washed. How to care for the daughter and the mother given their already busy day?!? Staff sort this out in a way that works for everyone through a series of discussions over the unit’s kitchen table.

This chapter makes a key point and it is this: reflection meetings require time and flexibility for staff to be able come together and have these sorts of conversations. And the chapter draws attention to a number of organizational factors that make this time possible: Good staffing ratios create time for reflection. The fact that RN is available and, on the floor, also matters. This is not by chance; the facility has a centrally located kitchen table, where she can sit, be visible and do her reporting. Her reporting workload is also considerably less than in North America, allowing her to welcome interruptions.