Service user involvement and repositioning of healthcare professionals: A framework for examining implications of different forms of involvement
Andreassen, Tone Alm
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Models or measures to strengthen the position of service users not only change the position of the users, they also alter the position of the professionals involved. However, different forms of involvement alter the position of professionals differently. The aim of this article is to present an analytical framework that allows for an examination of different, ideal types of involvement, and their implications for the positioning of professionals. Three basic forms of involvement are identified: involvement as a) self-determination and self-management, b) sharing of lived experience, and c) co-management and mediation of causes and concerns. Within each of these basic forms, different models or measures are classified according to the positions of patients and professionals respectively. The framework shows that professionals are repositioned as facilitators, not only therapists; as partners and co-workers, rather than sole experts; as learners, rather than experts and teachers; and as recipients rather than in the position of offering knowledge and skills. While detailed and long-term investigation is necessary to determine the impact of involvement in actual cases, the presence of models and measures to strengthen the position of the users in various ways transforms the context of professional work, as well as the classic meaning of professionalism.