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Transitioning from caregiver to visitor in a long-term care facility: the experience of caregivers of people with dementia

journal contribution
posted on 2015-01-01, 00:00 authored by K Crawford, Robin DigbyRobin Digby, Melissa BloomerMelissa Bloomer, H Tan, A Williams
OBJECTIVES: Transitioning from the primary caregiver to the visitor in a long-term care facility may be challenging for the caregiver; they are required to surrender their caring duties to the medical and nursing staff. The aim of this study was to explore the experiences of caregivers during their transition from day-to-day caregiver of a person with dementia to a visitor in a long-term care facility. METHODS: This study utilised a qualitative descriptive design. Twenty caregivers of people with dementia were recruited from the one Aged Rehabilitation and Geriatric Evaluation and Management facility, located in Victoria, Australia. Semi-structured interviews were used to explore the caregiver's experiences. Interviews were analysed using thematic analysis. RESULTS: The interview data revealed that the participants were undergoing similar experiences. The findings revealed that it was difficult for the caregiver to transition to their new role of visitor; negative reactions of grief, loss of motivation and loneliness were also coupled with positive feelings of relief and the reassurance that their relative or friend would be well cared for and safe within the long-term care facility. CONCLUSION: The findings offer insight into the experiences felt by caregivers when their relative or friend with dementia is admitted to hospital. Implications of this study include the need to improve the transition process for the caregiver by allowing them to be involved in the decision-making process, keeping them informed of care decisions, and importantly, providing emotional support to help the caregiver positively adapt to this transition.



Aging & mental health






739 - 746


Taylor & Francis


London, Eng.





Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal; C Journal article

Copyright notice

2014, Taylor & Francis