Friday, 3 December 2010

Lessons learned: Staff perceptions of the Nintendo Wii as a health promotion tool within an aged-care and disability service.

Health promotion journal of Australia, 2010 Dec;21(3):189-95.

Higgins HC, Horton JK, Hodgkinson BC, Muggleton SB.

Blue Care, Milton, Queensland.

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Issue addressed: Enhancing opportunities for all older people to be physically and mentally active is an imperative in our ageing society. Lessons learned from the use of the Nintendo Wii within Queensland agedcare and disability services were assembled through eliciting staff perceptions regarding the usefulness of Wii technology within their centres.

Methods: Telephone interviews were conducted with direct care staff in 53 centres that had been using the Wii technology for at least three months. Content analysis of interview data identified the major response patterns raised by staff.

Results: Staff noted that Wii activities were easy to master for more able clients and that there was minimal risk to clients. Staff reported that these activities provided health promoting physical benefits (mobility, range of motion, dexterity, coordination, distraction from pain) and psychosocial gains (social engagement, self-esteem, mastery, ability to pacify challenging behaviours) and were a useful adjunct to other care practices within these aged-care and disabilities services.

Conclusions: Staff believed that Wii activities provided purposeful and meaningful opportunities to promote wellbeing for aged and disabled clients within an aged-care and disability service. However, Wii activities were less successful with clients who had significant cognitive and/or physical disabilities.

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