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New way of working: Professionals' expectations and experiences of the Culture and Health Project for clients with psychiatric disabilities: A focus group study

Journal article
Authors B. A. Wastberg
B. Sandstrom
A Birgitta Gunnarsson
Published in International Journal of Mental Health Nursing
Volume 27
Issue 1
Pages 329-340
ISSN 1445-8330
Publication year 2018
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Health and Rehabilitation
Pages 329-340
Language en
Keywords cultural activities, group-based activities, nature-assisted activities, physical activities, qualitative, severe mental-illness, quality-of-life, implementation, intervention, schizophrenia, comorbidity, disorder, services, people, sense
Subject categories Psychiatry, Nursing


There is a need for various types of interventions when meeting needs of clients with psychiatric disabilities and complementary interventions may also influence their well-being. The Culture and Health project, based on complementary interventions with 270 clients, was created in a county in Sweden for clients with psychiatric disabilities and for professionals to carry out the interventions. The aim of this study was to investigate the professionals' expectations regarding the project and their clients' possibilities for participating, and to investigate the professionals' experiences of the project after its completion. Focus group data with a total of 30 professionals participating were collected. A qualitative content analysis revealed four categories of the professionals' expectations before entering the project: "Clients' own possibilities and limitations for their development and independence", "Professionals' possibilities for supporting the clients", "Societal prerequisites", and "Expectations of a new way of working". Furthermore, the analysis regarding professionals' experiences after working with the project revealed three categories: "Adopting the challenges", "Having ways of working that function - prerequisites and possibilities", and "Meeting the future - an ambition to continue". Conclusion: Working in the Culture and Health project together with the clients in group-based activities was perceived as beneficial, although challenges arose. When implementing cultural activities, support from stakeholder organisations is needed.

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