ANIMAL PROGRAMS AND ANIMAL-ASSISTED THERAPY IN SKILLED AND INTERMEDIATE CARE FACILITIES IN ILLINOIS (NURSING HOMES).
Published 1990 .
About the Book
Many authors have presented the viewpoint that animal programs such as animal visitations or resident animals are beneficial to the institutionalized elderly. This study is exploratory and descriptive of animal programs and animal assisted therapy in skilled and intermediate care facilities in Illinois. A random sample of 233 facilities are included in the study. Data were collected using a self-administered mail questionnaire.
The results of the study indicate that animal programs are very common in long-term care facilities with 91.4 percent of the facilities that responded allowing nonscheduled animal visits, 57.1 percent having regularly scheduled animal visitation programs, 46.4 percent having resident animals and less than 13 percent having organized animal assisted therapy programs. There are few variations in animal programs based on the level of care provided in the facility.
Long-term care professionals have very positive attitudes toward the utilization of animals in long-term care. Approximately 85 percent of the respondents (primarily administrators) were moderately to very favorable toward the utilization of animals and 70 percent report that their staff have a positive attitude toward animal programs.
Approximately 85 percent of the facilities report that animal programs are psychologically beneficial and 66 percent report they are physically beneficial. The advantages and disadvantages of animal programs are also discussed. The most frequently cited advantage of animal programs is increased social interaction and communication among the residents. The most frequently cited disadvantage is the staff time required for conducting the programs.
The results indicate that animal programs are relatively safe with a total of 66 incidents in 24 facilities reported during the past year. Policy and practice implications with regard to documentation, written policy and procedure, and animal selection and training are discussed.
Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 51-07, Section: B, page: 3315.
Thesis (PH.D.)--THE UNION INSTITUTE, 1990.
School code: 1033.
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