Intended, Unintended, Unanticipated? Consequences of Social Distancing Measures for Nursing Home Residents During the Covid-19 Pandemic
During the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Norwegian health authorities introduced social distancing measures in nursing homes. The aim was to protect vulnerable residents from contracting the potentially deadly infection. Drawing on individual interviews with nursing home managers and physicians, and focus groups with nursing staff, we explore and describe consequences the social distancing measures had on nursing home residents’ health and wellbeing. The analysis indicates that most residents became socially deprived, while some became calmer during the nursing home lockdown. Nursing home staff, physicians and managers witnessed that residents’ health and functional capacity declined when services to maintain health, such as physiotherapy, were put on hold. In conclusion, we argue that although Norwegian health authorities managed to keep the infection rates low in nursing homes, this came at a high price for the residents however, as the social distancing measures also negatively impacted their health and wellbeing.
CitationTingvold, Moholt, Førland, Jacobsen, Tranvåg. Intended, Unintended, Unanticipated? Consequences of Social Distancing Measures for Nursing Home Residents During the Covid-19 Pandemic. Global Qualitative Nursing Research. 2023;10
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