Working in a storied way. Narrative-based approaches to person-centred care and practice development in older adult residential care settings.

Catherine Buckley, Brendan McCormack, Assumpta Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)


Aims and ObjectivesTo evaluate the effects of the implementation of a methodological framework for a narrative based approach to practice development and person-centred care in residential aged care settings.BackgroundCare in long-term residential settings for older people is moving away from the biomedical approach and adopting a more person-centred one. Narrative can help shape the way care is planned and organised. The provision of person-centred care that is holistic and that takes account of resident's beliefs and values can be enhanced by incorporating narrative approaches to care within a practice development framework.DesignThe chosen methodology was participatory action research.MethodsBetween 2010 and 2014, a methodological framework of narrative practice was implemented in two residential care settings, comprising 37 residents and 38 staff, using an action research approach. Three action cycles: (i) narrative practice and culture identification, (ii) developing narrative practice and (iii) working in a storied way emerged during the implementation.ResultsKey outcomes emerged in relation to the findings. These were based on narrative being, knowing and doing and centred around the key outcomes of: (i) how people responded to change (narrative being), (ii) the development of shared understandings (narrative knowing) and (iii) intentional action (narrative doing).ConclusionThe implementation of a framework of narrative practice demonstrated that how people respond to change, the development of shared understandings and intentional action were interrelated and interlinked. It illustrated the importance of ensuring that practice context is taken account of in the implementation of action research and the importance of ensuring that narrative being, knowing and doing are clear and understandable for change to occur.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
Early online date30 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - 25 Mar 2018



  • residential care
  • nursing
  • narrative
  • practice development
  • gerontology
  • biography

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