Academic journal article Care Management Journals

Exploration of Long-Term Care Institution Managers' Perceptions of Institutional Indoor Environment Quality and Ease of Administration

Academic journal article Care Management Journals

Exploration of Long-Term Care Institution Managers' Perceptions of Institutional Indoor Environment Quality and Ease of Administration

Article excerpt

This study investigated the level of management's perception of the importance of indoor environment indicators at longterm care facilities as well as the differences between the level of perceived importance and the level of implementation. This study also analyzed the indicators for improving indoor environments. This study selected Taiwanese longterm care facility managers as its subjects to whom questionnaires were distributed by mail. Descriptive statistics, a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA), and an importanceperformance analysis were used to conduct analyses on the data retrieved from the questionnaires. The results indicate that, of the indoor environment indicators of four facility spaces, bedrooms had the highest perceived level of importance. The lounge was the easiest space in which to implement the indicators. Differences were found between the perceived level of importance and the level of implementation for six of the indoor environment indicators of the four facility spaces. In these four spaces, the ventilation indicator was the most important, whereas implementing the temperature and humidity indicators was the most difficult. The highest priority for indicator improvement was given to the temperature in the bedrooms and bathrooms, whereas control over temperature, humidity, and sound had a low priority. The indicators seen as requiring continuous maintenance were lighting and ventilation. Facility managers had a high level of awareness and competence in implementing the ventilation indicator. However, although they were aware of the importance of the temperature, humidity, and sound indicators, their implementation was difficult, suggesting that they needed to be improved.

Keywords: indoor environment quality; long-term care institution; long-term care institution director; lighting; ventilation; sound

A long-term care (LTC) institution should attach particular importance to indoor environment quality because the most frequently occurring infectious diseases in LTC institutions are respiratory infectious diseases such as tuberculosis (Bradley, 1999; Chen, Chiung, Yong, & Dah-Shyong, 2008; Hu et al., 2007; Lin, Lang, Hua, & Tiau, 2004). In 1993, Taiwan's proportion of older adult rose to more than 7%, whereupon Taiwan formally became an aging society. By 2010, the proportion of older adult was 10.7%, and the number of LTC institutions had risen from 183 in 1999 to 1,441. Given this increase in the number of LTC institutions, their ability to manage the quality of their indoor environments has become an important factor in the physical health of their residents.

Numerous studies have investigated the indoor environment indicators of LTC institutions such as indoor air quality (IAQ), temperature, humidity, sound, lighting, and ventilation. They have emphasized that the provision of an appropriate indoor environment enables residents and caregivers to enjoy a comfortable environment (Hoof, Kort, Duijnstee, Rutten, & Hensen, 2010; Ming, Cheng, Ming, & Yi, 2001; Taiwan Architecture & Building Center, (n.d.); Jiang & Ryu, 2010; Jiang, Ryu, & Kagawa, 2008; Jiang, Ryu, & Liu, 2009). However, few studies have investigated the issues concerning LTC institutions' control over their indoor environments. It is therefore unknown whether facilities are capable of controlling and managing indoor environment indicators. Managers of LTC institutions are responsible for handling facility-related affairs (Robbins & Langton, 2000). According to studies on managerial competency and the definitions provided by the existing literature, managers must possess knowledge and skills, be capable of implementing various activities in their professional fields, and achieve a high level of implementation (Katz, 2009; Quinn, Clair, Faerman, Thompson, & Mcgrath, 1996). Therefore, this study selected managers as its subjects to investigate the differences between management's perception of the importance of indoor environment quality and the level of its implementation. …

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