Experiences of Patients with Common Mental Disorders concerning Team-based Primary Care and a Person-Centered Dialogue Meeting: an Intervention to promote return to work

Ausra Saxvik, Karin Törnbom

Keywords: Common mental disorders, rehabilitation, collaboration, qualitative study, person-centered dialogue meeting, return to work.

Common mental disorders in combination with work-related stress are widespread in the western world, not least in Sweden. Various interactive factors, primarily work-related, have impact on the return to work process, for example; a supportive communicative function between the person on sick leave and the employer may facilitate this process. The aim was to investigate experiences of being part of a collaborative care model including a person-centered dialogue meeting with the employer and with a rehabilitation coordinator as the moderator.

Research questions:
The aim of this study was to explore experiences of persons with common mental disorders who participated in the Co-Work-Care model with a person-centered dialogue meeting and a rehabilitation coordinator as the moderator.

A qualitative design based on individual interviews with 13 persons diagnosed with common mental disorders who participated in an extensive collaborative care model, called the Co-Work-Care model. Persons were recruited as a heterogeneous sample with respect to age, gender, work background, and time since the intervention. All interviews were analyzed with Systematic Text Condensation by Malterud.

Five codes synthesized the results: 1) A feeling of being taken care of, 2) Collaboration within the group was perceived as supportive, 3) An active and sensitive listener, 4) Structure and planning in the dialogue meeting, 5) The person-centered dialogue meeting was supportive and provided increased understanding.

Participants experienced the close collaborative contact with the care manager and the rehabilitation coordinator as highly valuable for their rehabilitation process. Participants valued a well-structured dialogue meeting that included initial planning and a thorough communication involving the patient, the employer, and coordinator. Further, participants appreciated having an active role during the meeting, also empowering the return to work process.

Points for discussion:
Do you have a rehabilitation coordinator in your Primary Care Center?

What kind of models do you use to increase the quality of care for patients with common mental disorders?

How does Collaborative Care work in your country? With or without care manager function?