Demographic trends indicate a growth in the older adult population, and in turn, are affecting the availability and use of health services. Although placement of an older adult charge into nursing home care is often described as a logical progression through the continuum of available services, informal caregivers often view placement as a last resort or as an indication of failure. This qualitative study used grounded theory methods to explore the experiences of caregivers actively involved in the process of placing an older adult in a long-term care facility upon discharge from acute care. Four themes (uncertainty, surrendering to the system, urgency, and validating) were interwoven throughout caregivers'perspectives of the conflictive decision to use nursing home care after hospitalization.
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