A Brandon University professor will lead a new research project focused on improving long-term care environments for both aging adults and their caregivers.
The study seeks to identify how and why certain features of care environments influence violence in-home and residential care settings with the overall goal of improving violence prevention strategies in long-term care, according to a media release from BU.
The four-year research project is headed up by Rachel Herron, a professor with Brandon University’s Department of Geography and Environment, and funded by a grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research worth more than $250,000.
"We need to understand how policies, practices and people can make care better for older adults and carers. COVID-19 has placed a spotlight on problems across long-term care. It is important that we identify what is working well and implement strategies for everyone’s well-being," Herron said in the release.
In addition to Herron, the project involves researchers at the University of Manitoba, Carleton University, Dalhousie University and St. Francis Xavier University in the fields of sociology, community health, law and nursing.
The study will compare care settings for older adults in Manitoba and Nova Scotia, integrating information from organizational documents, first-hand experiences and researcher observation.
Herron said that violence can lead to physical and emotional harm for carers, while older adults who are labelled as violent or aggressive can experience a direct impact on the quality of their care and even their sense of self.
"Although some research indicates environmental causes of violence, little is known about the specific ways that social, physical and organizational features of care environments produce violent actions across the long-term care continuum."
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