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Match between needs and services for participation of older adults receiving home care: Appraisals and challenges

Mélanie Levasseur (School of Rehabilitation, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Canada)
Nadine Larivière (School of Rehabilitation, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Canada)
Noémie Royer (School of Rehabilitation, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Canada)
Johanne Desrosiers (School of Rehabilitation, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Canada)
Philippe Landreville (School of Psychology, Université Laval, Québec, Canada)
Philippe Voyer (Faculty of Nursing Sciences, Université Laval, Québec, Canada)
Nathalie Champoux (Department of Family Medicine and Emergency Medicine, Univesité de Montréal, Montréal, Canada)
Hélène Carbonneau (Leisure, Culture and Tourism Department, Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, Trois-Rivières, Canada, and)
Andrée Sévigny (Family and Emergency Medicine, Université Laval, Québec, Canada)

Leadership in Health Services

ISSN: 1751-1879

Article publication date: 1 July 2014




This paper aims to explore the match between needs and services related to participation for frail older adults receiving home care.


A qualitative multiple case study was conducted with 11 triads each involving an elder, a caregiver and a healthcare provider working in a Health and Social Services Centers (HSSCs).


Although HSSCs in Québec are supposed to promote social integration and participation of older adults, services provided to the older adults in this study focused mainly on safety and independence in personal care, dressing, mobility and nutrition, without fully meeting older adults’ needs in these areas. Discrepancies between needs and services may be attributable to the assessment not covering all the dimensions of social participation or accurately identifying older adults’ complex needs; older adults’ and their caregivers’ difficulties identifying their needs and accepting their limitations and the assistance offered; healthcare providers’ limited knowledge and time to comprehensively assess needs and provide services; guidelines restricting the types and quantity of services to be supplied; and limited knowledge of older adults, caregivers and healthcare providers about services and resources available in the community.


To improve and maintain older adults’ participation, a more thorough assessment of their participation, especially in social activities, is required, as is greater support for older adults and their families in using available community resources. It is also important to review the services provided by HSSCs and to optimize partnerships with community organizations.



This study was financed by the Réseau québécois de recherche sur le vieillissement and the Université de Sherbrooke. Thanks to Annie Carrier, Mélanie Couture and Frances Gallagher for their comments and suggestions that helped to improve the interview guide and advance this study. Thanks to research assistants Joanie Lacasse-Bédard, Anaïs Marcil-Héguy, Eugénie Cadieux-Pinsonnault and Annie-Ève Jutras, who contributed to the feasibility of this major research project. The advice given by Jean-Philippe Viriot-Durandal, coordinator of the special edition of ’Pouvoir gris’, and Pascal Dreyer, Editor-in-Chief of Gérontologie et société, was much appreciated. Thanks to the HSSC for its help during the recruitment process, and especially to the healthcare providers who participated in the interviews. Finally, thanks to the older adults and their caregivers who agreed to participate in this study, gave their time and expressed their needs regarding their social participation.


Levasseur, M., Larivière, N., Royer, N., Desrosiers, J., Landreville, P., Voyer, P., Champoux, N., Carbonneau, H. and Sévigny, A. (2014), "Match between needs and services for participation of older adults receiving home care: Appraisals and challenges", Leadership in Health Services, Vol. 27 No. 3, pp. 204-223.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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