438.4 The Swedish policies of mental health care as shown in collaboration

Friday, August 3, 2012: 10:00 AM
Faculty of Economics, TBA
Oral Presentation
Linda SÖDERBERG , Vårdalinstitutet - The Swedish Institute for Health Sciences, Sweden
Ever since the de-institutionalization took its beginning in Sweden in the middle of the 20th century, the Swedish policy has been one of integrating persons with mental illness and/or disability in the surrounding society. In this, the responsibility for this client group’s everyday life were put on the municipalities and the social care in contrast of earlier being the sole responsibility of the health care. During the 1990’s, the individual’s right to influence one's own care and life was strengthen in law and has since then been one of the major tasks appointed from the government to the mental health care. Further, there has also been a strong encouragement and a statutory for the organisations in mental health care (consisting of the social care and the health care) to collaborate to meet the client group’s often-complex needs. To implement the policy of collaboration and of the clients’ independence and autonomy, the government is steering through laws, policies, and recommendations. One of the recommendations is to form strategic collaboration councils with members from the concerned organisations.

This paper contains material from a study on strategic collaboration councils in psychiatric care. A part of the study will result in a thesis. The strategic collaboration councils studied are an interorganisational collaboration wherein managers from different organisations meet and discuss the strategic work round their joint client group: persons suffering from mental illness or disability. The material consists of a quantitative part wherein the participant members answered a questionnaire. The qualitative part consists of observations of the collaboration councils’ meetings during one year as well as interviews conducted with the participants. In this paper, concern is given to what kinds of tasks, originated from the government, are assigned to the collaboration councils. How are the tasks handled and do the councils actually collaborate around them?