Integrating home care services in Europe.

Genet, N., Katalin, E., Boerma, W., Hutchinson, A., Garms-Homolova, V., Naiditch, M., Lamura, G., Chlabicz, S., Gulácsi, L., Fagerstrom, C., Bolibar, B. Integrating home care services in Europe. Journal of Clinical Nursing: 2010, 19(suppl. 1), p. 14. Abstract. 4th European Nursing Congress 'Older Persons. The Future of Care', 4-5 oktober 2010, Rotterdam.
Introduction: A key feature of home care is its divided nature. Conditions for coordination are poor. A variety of professionals provides a coherent mix of services. The social care system is in general local, less professionalised and usually more poorly financed than the health care system. These differences are related to or result in different interests, culture and style and are a ground for communication problems. The existence of this divide will be explored it will be considered what remedies are available and are applied. Methods and Materials: This presentation is drawn upon the results of the EC-financed EURHOMAP project and a discussion between country experts invited to the conference. The study has collected a wealth of data on various types of home care (including nursing care, personal care, domestic aid and respite care). In 31 countries information was gathered on a large set of indicators in the areas of policy & regulation, financing, organisation & delivery and clients & informal carers. Results: Home care services may stem from different sectors, systems and organisations. Several countries have identified and addressed problems related to this situation. However, the degree of splitting varies among countries. It can exist at one or more of the following levels: governance and regulation; entry to the home care system; delivery of services. Furthermore the extent to which the division occurs may differ as well. Integration at governance level creates more favourable conditions for integration at access and delivery level. From a clients’ perspective poor integration may manifest itself both at the point of entry (absence of a clear-cut easy access point), and in the delivery of services (which are not tailored to what is needed or lack flexibility). Conclusion: There are many possible remedies against problems of poor integration; depending on the level and the situation where the problem occurs.(aut. ref.)