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Decision-Making Is in the Making! Aspects of Decision-Making in the Area of Assistive and WelfareTechnology—A Qualitative Study
Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare. (Priliv)
Mälardalen University, School of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Innovation and Product Realisation.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2514-2297
Högskolan Dalarna.
Mälardalen University, School of Health, Care and Social Welfare, Health and Welfare.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9821-9945
2021 (English)In: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, ISSN 1661-7827, E-ISSN 1660-4601, Vol. 18, article id 4028Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Assistive and welfare technology (AT/WT) has been introduced as a way of facing an ageing population and providing support for older adults in their daily lives. There is much research concerning the assessment and recommendation of AT/WT to individual end-users. However, few studies have explored AT/WT decision-making from a managerial perspective. This study explores what aspects influence decision-making in assistive technology organizations concerning new technology procurements. The study is based on interviews with 24 managers engaged in assistive technology organizations, representing 13 of 21 regions in Sweden. The interview data consisted of the participants’ experiences deciding on AT/WT procurement. A reflexive inductive thematic analysis was used to identify aspects that influenced decision-making. The main findings show that decision-making is in the making, meaning that decision-making is a constant on-going managerial process. Furthermore, the findings show that managers experience uncertainty in the decision-making, sometimes make ad hoc decisions and request an evidence-based, person-centred approach to improve decision-making. The study concludes that supportive, technology, patient, and knowledge aspects influence managers’ decisions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
MDPI, 2021. Vol. 18, article id 4028
Keywords [en]
assistive technology; welfare technology; decision-making; managers; assistive technology organizations; older adults; thematic analysis
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences Health Sciences
Research subject
Care Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-53887DOI: 10.3390/ijerph18084028ISI: 000644123900001PubMedID: 33921261Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85103885559OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-53887DiVA, id: diva2:1544491
Projects
HV3DAvailable from: 2021-04-15 Created: 2021-04-15 Last updated: 2021-11-15Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Assistive technology and welfare technology explorations: Aspects of perception, utilisation and decision-making
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Assistive technology and welfare technology explorations: Aspects of perception, utilisation and decision-making
2021 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Aims: The overall aim of this thesis was to explore decision makers’ and professionals’ perceptions, utilisation, and decision-making about assistive technology (AT) and welfare technology (WT) within the interprofessional field of care for older adults. Methods: A literature review was conducted, including nine peer-reviewed scientific articles (I), analysed with a qualitative descriptive method. A web-based questionnaire, answered by 393 officials and health care providers in municipal eldercare (II and III), was analysed using content analysis of the open-ended answers (II) and descriptive and inferential statistics of the closed-ended answers (III). A semi-structured interview with 24 decision makers was also conducted and analysed with thematic reflexive analysis. Results: The studies revealed a lack of evidence-based decision models to support assistive and welfare technology decisions, partly due to the context being complex and multifaceted. The technology was perceived as progressive and cutting-edge, while organizational structure and culture were perceived as regressive and resistant to change. The results revealed personnel working with WT were generally very positive toward new technology, although there were age, gender, participation, and professional differences. Study IV results revealed that supportive aspects, technology aspects, patient aspects, and knowledge aspects influence AT-organizations' decision-making. Although AT/WT has been portrayed to have the potential to solve the challenges of an aging population, the decision-making regarding AT/WT is complex and evolving. Increased communication between government, regions, and municipalities to support the development of guidelines would enhance the goal of a person-centred care. Conclusion: This thesis contributes to knowledge of decision-making models, focusing on GATE´s model (Khasnabis et al., 2015) applicable in AT/WT. Further development and deepen knowledge in the area of AT/WT appears as needed due to results showing that there is a lack of structured knowledge about the decision-making processes and evaluations of effects of AT/WT.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: E-print AB, 2021
Series
Mälardalen University Press Dissertations, ISSN 1651-4238 ; 333
Keywords
assistive technology, welfare technology, older adults, health care providers, content analysis, cross-sectional, thematic analysis, interdisciplinary health care professionals, decision-making, managers, utilisation, perception
National Category
Health Sciences
Research subject
Care Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-53888 (URN)978-91-7485-505-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2021-05-28, sal C1-007 och digitalt via Zoom, Mälardalens högskola, Eskilstuna, 09:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
HV3D
Available from: 2021-04-15 Created: 2021-04-15 Last updated: 2021-05-07Bibliographically approved

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Baudin, KatarinaSundström, AngelinaGustafsson, Christine

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