Developing networks between residential aged care facilities as a result of engagement in a falls prevention project: an action research study
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Background: Residential aged care facility (RACF) staff often operate in isolation. Research is lacking on networking between facilities. Aims: To explore outcomes associated with network formation between two RACFs as part of an action research approach to reducing falls. Design: Action research approach with qualitative data collected. Methods: Twelve RACF staff from two facilities in regional Tasmania, Australia, formed a falls prevention action research group. Thematic analysis was undertaken of 22 audio-recorded fortnightly group meetings. Results: This was the first opportunity for participants to meet colleagues from another facility in a professional context. The formation of an inter-facility network enabled the sharing of ideas and systems related to evidence-based falls prevention activities and other issues and galvanised a collaborative focus for action. Conclusions: An action research process can be used to create an inter-facility network. Such networks can decrease staff isolation and facilitate best resident care.
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