Photography as method in care home research

CRAIG, Claire (2016). Photography as method in care home research. In: 40th College of Occupational Therapists Annual Conference, Harrogate, 28th-30th June 2016.

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Globally the population is ageing and the fastest growing demographic are people who are aged eighty five and over (WHO, 2011). These indiviuals represent a significant proportion of the population of older people who live in care homes. Understanding the life world of older people living in these environments is important if the occupational needs of these individuals are to be met. This requires researchers to develop and adopt research methods that can help overcome some of the sensory, physical and cognitive challenges that frail older people may face (Murphy et al 2013). This paper explores the potential of photography as a method in care home research. It describes a study undertaken in three care homes in the north of England. Phase one of the research utilised ethnography to build understanding of the broader factors associated with photography in the care homes studied. In phase two, older people were recruited through purposeful sampling, given cameras and invited to take photographs of their day to day experiences of living in the home. These were analysed using an interpretative phenomenological method. The method offered a number of important insights into how older people navigated the multiple transitions that living in a care home requires as individuals sought to manage changes in their physical health with the demands of learning how to live within an unfamiliar environment alongside a group of individuals (staff and residents) whose membership was constantly in flux. The value of photography extended beyond the immediate aim of being a tool for data collection as individuals expressed their enjoyment and the value of photography as a meaningful activity. Given the limited opportunities for care home residents to participate in occupation (Wenborn et al 2013) photography seems well suited to occupational therapy research in these environments. References Murphy, J. and Oliver, T.M (2013) ‘The use of Talking Mats to support people with dementia and their carers to make decisions together.’ Health and Social Care in the Community, 21 (2) pp.171–180. Wenborn, J. Challis, D. Head, J. Miranda-Castillo C., Popham, C, Thakur, R. Illes, J. Orrell, M (2013) ‘Providing activity for people with dementia in care homes: a cluster randomised controlled trial’. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 28 (12) pp.1296–1304 World Health Organisation (2011) Global Health and Aging. Geneva. World Health Organisation. Keywords Older people, Research, Other

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Cultural Communication and Computing Research Institute > Art and Design Research Centre
Depositing User: Claire Craig
Date Deposited: 27 Jul 2016 08:42
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 18:08

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