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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 29  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 217-222

Using forum play to prevent abuse in health care organizations: A qualitative study exploring potentials and limitations for learning

Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Division of Gender and Medicine, Linköping University; Department of Thematic Studies, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden

Correspondence Address:
A Jelmer Bruggemann
Department of Thematic Studies, Linköping University, Linköping 581 83
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1357-6283.204215

Background: Abuse in health care organizations is a pressing issue for caregivers. Forum play, a participatory theater model, has been used among health care staff to learn about and work against abuse. This small-scale qualitative study aims to explore how forum play participants experience the potentials and limitations of forum play as an educational model for continued professional learning at a hospital clinic. Methods: Fifteen of 41 members of staff of a Swedish nephrology clinic, primarily nurses, voluntarily participated in either one or two forum play workshops, where they shared experiences and together practiced working against abuse in everyday health care situations. Interviews were conducted after the workshops with 14 of the participants, where they were asked to reflect on their own and others' participation or nonparticipation, and changes in their individual and collective understanding of abuse in health care. Results: Before the workshops, the informants were either hesitant or very enthusiastic toward the drama-oriented form of learning. Afterward, they all agreed that forum play was a very effective way of individual as well as collective learning about abuse in health care. However, they saw little effect on their work at the clinic, primarily understood as a consequence of the fact that many of their colleagues did not take part in the workshops. Discussion: This study, based on the analysis of forum play efforts at a single hospital clinic, suggests that forum play can be an innovative educational model that creates a space for reflection and learning in health care practices. It might be especially fruitful when a sensitive topic, such as abuse in health care, is the target of change. However, for the effects to reach beyond individual insights and a shared understanding among a small group of participants, strategies to include all members of staff need to be explored.

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