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Resident and staff perceptions of the content of their relationship in supported housing facilities for people with psychiatric disabilities

Authors Brunt D, Rask M

Received 6 July 2018

Accepted for publication 21 August 2018

Published 16 November 2018 Volume 2018:11 Pages 673—681


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

David Brunt, Mikael Rask
Department of Health and Caring Sciences, Linnaeus University, Växjö, Sweden
Background: The work of staff in supported housing facilities for people with psychiatric disabilities has most often been studied from the perspective of one of the two groups but not from both. The staff in these facilities generally come from differing professions, reflecting either the beliefs of the medical or social models of psychiatric care.
Aim: The aim of the present study was thus to investigate the perceptions of residents and staff of the frequency and the importance of verbal and social interactions in supported housing facilities for people with psychiatric disabilities and to compare these perceptions. A further aim was to investigate whether differences in education background and other sociodemographic factors are reflected in the staff perceptions of these interactions.
Methods: One hundred and eleven residents living in supported housing facilities in Sweden and 223 staff completed the Verbal and Social Interaction Supported Housing questionnaire.
Results: The results revealed significant differences between the perceptions of the residents and staff on all six categories of interactions, where the staff rated the frequency and importance higher than the residents, but also some similarities in terms of the relative order of the frequency of the categories of interactions. Both the residents and staff perceived that “To build a relationship with a supportive quality” as the most frequently occurring and most important category. The mean levels of importance for all the categories were higher than for the frequency according to both groups. No differences were found between the staff with a medical or social educational background. Similarly, no differences were found in staff perceptions between those with short experience and those with long experience.
Conclusion: This study is the first survey of its kind and the results indicate the need for reducing the gap between the staff intentions and the residents’ preferences, which could form the basis for in-house training activities.

Keywords: supported housing, psychiatric disability, residents, staff, interactions, relationships

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