Barriers and facilitators for coherent rehabilitation among people with inflammatory arthritis – a qualitative interview study

Helle Feddersen*, Jens Søndergaard, Lena Andersen, Bettina Munksgaard, Jette Primdahl

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Background: People with chronic diseases have contact with several different professionals across hospital wards, municipality services and general practice and often experience lack of coherence. The purpose was to explore perceived barriers and facilitators to coherent rehabilitation pathways for health care users with inflammatory arthritis and how coherence can be improved. Methods: Semi-structured individual interviews were conducted before a planned inpatient rehabilitation stay, 2-3 weeks and 4-6 months after discharge. Thematic reflexive analysis guided the analysis of data. Concepts of person-centred care, complex adaptive systems and integrated care were applied in the interpretations. Results: In all, 11 participants with IA were included. There was one overarching theme, The importance of a person-centred approach, illuminating the significance of professionals who respect healthcare user’ preferences. To use a person-centred approach, demands professionals who are interested in exploring the persons own values, preferences and experiences and incorporate these when planning care and rehabilitation.Connected to the overarching theme, three sub-themes were derived; 1) Experiences of empowerment and dis-empowerment, covering that most want to be in control and act themselves, but felt overwhelmed and lost energy and they tended to give up; 2) Experiences of communication and coordination, encompass how people feel forced to take on coordination and communication tasks themselves although they do not always feel qualified for this. Some asked for a coordination person and 3) Facing everyday life after discharge, covering how initiatives taken by professionals were not always experienced as helpful after discharge. Some gave up and some tried to find alternative paths themselves. Conclusion: Professionals taking a person-centred approach facilitated coherent rehabilitation pathways. This encompassed care with respect for individual needs and professionals who empowered patients to self-management. Furthermore, to be aware that interprofessional communication and coordination need to take place both between professional within the same department, between departments and between professionals in different sectors. After discharge, some patients were challenged in their everyday life when trying to follow the advice from the professionals. Professionals, who do not use a person-centred approach, hinder coherence. Patients thus feel compelled to take on communication and coordination tasks.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1347
JournalBMC Health Services Research
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Case-manager
  • Chronic disease
  • Complex adaptive systems
  • Empowerment
  • Inpatient rehabilitation
  • Integrated care
  • Navigator
  • Person-centred care
  • Humans
  • Patient Discharge
  • Arthritis
  • Delivery of Health Care
  • Qualitative Research
  • Communication


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