Evid Based Nurs 5:128 doi:10.1136/ebn.5.4.128
  • Qualitative

4 thematic patterns described the experience of placing a relative with Alzheimer’s disease in a special care unit

 QUESTION: How do caregivers describe their experiences of deciding to place a relative with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in a special care unit (SCU)?


Semistructured interviews.


3 midwestern states in the US.


30 family caregivers (80% women; 70% children and 30% spouses of patients) of relatives with AD who lived in an SCU.


Caregivers were interviewed for 1–3 hours by clinical nurse specialists or a gerontology specialist. These semistructured interviews were videotaped and transcribed. Caregivers were asked to describe the type and quantity of care they had provided before the SCU placement; their involvement since placement; the quality of their relationship with the SCU staff; their evaluation of the care their relative was receiving; and their views about the SCU placement. They were also asked to describe their feelings at the time of making the decision and during the actual relocation of their relative, and what helped or hindered dealing with their feelings about the SCU placement. 3 reviewers independently used Luborsky’s method of thematic analysis and QSR NUD*IST NVivo™ qualitative software to code and analyse the transcripts. Data …

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