A nursing expert at Robert Gordon University (RGU) has co-authored a practical guide which provides a new insight to implementing person-centred care.
Dr Lisa Kidd, Reader at the university’s School of Nursing and Midwifery, worked with research colleagues across the country on the guide which was published in December by the Health Foundation.
The guide has been written by a collaborative team whose experience includes living with long-term health conditions and supporting others with similar conditions through coaching and courses. Their experience also includes nursing, physiotherapy, service delivery and evaluation, research, and training of health care professionals.
The new guide provides useful ideas for what practitioners and commissioners should consider when starting to support people with long-term conditions to self-manage. It also explains what self-management support is, why it is important and how to ensure it is grounded in everyday practice.
Dr Lisa Kidd said: “Self-management support is an enabling process for people who live with long-term health conditions, rather than simply offering various treatments and is rooted within the quality of our relationships with people, rather than things that we do to people.
“The guide offers a helpful step forward for everyone involved in the design, implementation and evaluation of self-management support.”
For people with long-term conditions, living with their symptoms and adjusting the way they live around them is part of everyday life. Appointments with health professionals represent only a small proportion of their time and the rest of the time they are ‘going it alone.’
Dr Kidd added: “‘Self-management support’ is increasingly being seen as the answer, but there remains a lack of understanding about what a system of effective self-management support looks like.
“The truth is that implementing self-management support in practice is challenging for us all; marrying up the theory and rhetoric into practical steps for implementation is hard and there isn’t a single approach or technique that works for every area and every person, and nor should there be.
“We have articulated self-management support as a person-centred, value-driven approach which is embedded within our practice, our reflections and our thinking, rather than being prescriptive about how to make it work for everyone in every environment.
“Self-management support and the principles underpinning its implementation in practice are still relatively new and constantly evolving as we have demonstrated in the guide.”