Care Challenges in the Bathroom: The Views of Professional Care Providers Working in Clients’ Homes
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In home care, bathroom activities-particularly bathing and toileting-present a unique set of challenges. In this focus group study, professional home care providers identified factors that increase the danger and difficulty of assisting their clients with bathing and toileting. These included small restrictive spaces, a poor fit between available equipment and the environment, a reliance on manual handling techniques (but insufficient space to use optimal body mechanics), attempts to maintain normalcy, and caring for unsteady and unpredictable clients. Specific elements of each activity that care providers found difficult included multitasking to support client stability while performing care below the waist (dressing/undressing, providing perineal care) and helping clients to lift their legs in and out of a bathtub. Participants did not feel that available assistive devices provided enough assistance to reduce the danger and difficulty of these activities.
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