Nurse-assisted personal hygiene to older adults 65+ in home care setting

Britta Hørdam, Rikke Volmer Brandsen, Troels Krarup Frandsen, Anikke Bing, Heidi Næsted Stuhaug, Kim Petersen


Background and objective: Assisting frail older adults in home care settings with personal hygiene is a daily nursing role. Both Nightingale and Henderson had in their approach to basic nursing focus on assisting patients in their need of nurse assisted bath. Since 1994 focus on using a new technology to patient in dependency of nurse-assisted bath was developed. A clinical study involving older adults in need of nurse-assisted bath was carried out in a public homecare setting. This study aimed to study and compare older adults’ attitudes, experiences and evaluation of using traditional bath with soap and water versus prepacked products to their personal hygiene.

Methods: A number of 20 men and women participated in our research with focus on their daily need of nurse-assisted bath. The older adults had given a written consent. All participants were informed about the study verbally and in writing and they all agreed to participate and signed written informed consent forms. All data were handled confidentially, and the participants’ anonymity was assured. A clinical study was carried out. During three weeks, the older adults had nurse- assisted bath with soap and water two days followed by two days using prepacked was-cloths. The same nurse assisted the older adults all days, and they were interviewed before the research. Relevant data as age, gender, bath facilities at home, walking ability, dependency on help from others, contact to family/friends were collected. In the research period the older adults’ self-reported experiences with the two types of baths were registered. The nurses observed the baths with focus on the older adults’ attitude, satisfaction and experiences.

Results and conclusions: The patients preferred to have their own individual choice of daily bath type. Pre-packed wash-cloths were overall preferred by the nurses.

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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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