Symposium 4 – Privatization: The Case of Nursing Homes

Symposium 4

Privatization: The Case of Nursing Homes

Convener and Discussant:

Pat Armstrong, Distinguished Research Professor, York University, Toronto, Canada

Privatization has become a major feature of changing priorities in nursing homecare. For almost a decade, an international, interdisciplinary team of researchers has been reimagining long-term residential care. Organized initially around the four themes of approaches to care, work organization, accountability and financing, our ethnographic studies of nursing homes in Canada, Germany, Norway, Sweden, the US and the UK have made us increasingly aware of the forces driving us in various ways towards privatization. We have come to understand the move away from public provision takes various forms, including more corporate ownership of homes and of services within non-corporate ones, more private payment, more private decision-making, more unpaid care work, and more for-profit approaches to management, which together help to change our shared notions of care. At the same time, we have seen many variations across jurisdictions, demonstrating that context and resistance matter. And the consequences vary as well.

This panel is based on articles we are preparing for an edited collection.

1. Pat Armstrong, Distinguished Research Professor, Department of Sociology, York University, Toronto, Canada
‘Forms of privatization’
2. Gudmund Ågotnes, Postdoctoral Fellow, Centre for Care Research Western Norway University of Applied Sciences Bergen, Norway, presenting author; co-authors Frode Jacobsen, Marta Szebehely
‘Privatization in the Norwegian and Swedish nursing home sector’
3. Hugh Armstrong, Distinguished Research Professor, Professor Emeritus of Social Work and Political Economy, Carleton University Ottawa, Canada
‘Contracting Care’
4. Rachel Barken, Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Sociology, York University Toronto, Canada
‘Unpaid care in public places’
5. Liz Lloyd, Professor of School for Policy Studies, University of Bristol, United Kingdom
‘Older Residents’ Experiences of Risk in a Market System of Nursing Homes’