Health Research BC is providing matching funds for this project, which is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research’s Winter 2023 ICS Planning and Dissemination Grant – Supporting & Strengthening the Health Workforce stream.
It is important to attract, keep, and support the best health workforce in long-term care homes since the conditions of work impact the conditions of care for residents. There is also a need for more skilled staff because the level of care of residents has become higher and more complex due to their mix of health and social care needs. National long-term care service standards suggest to offer the best education to prepare for starting work and ongoing training to promote a culture of learning, continuous quality improvement and mental health and wellbeing of staff. Although used in a limited way in select countries and regions, promising approaches exist to support education, research, and best practice in care homes such as the ‘Teaching Nursing Home Model’ and MicroResearch of small, locally driven health research teams. Our research team is based in long-term care at Fraser Health, the largest regional health authority in British Columbia. We are in the early stages of planning research to attract, keep, and support the health workforce in long-term care homes through co-creation of smart approaches for partnering in research. The planning activities will include a review of relevant reports and conversations with people from organisations that have adopted smart models for doing research in care homes. Also, one-on-one conversations with key informants and group dialogue with the key informants and relevant stakeholders will be held to learn from their experiences. These activities will help to build a network of research collaborators, including health providers, interested in working together on long-term care research. Also, meaningful research priorities and promising approaches for research will be identified to inform the planning of a larger team-based study. This proposed project and future research from this will contribute to improve the equity and quality of care and health and well-being of residents, caregivers and staff in long-term care homes.