This text based on the Thesis provided in Master’s Degree in Digital Health Programme. This programme provide the graduates with skills needed for development of digital social and health care services, service production and for the development of service quality and management. The studies also prepare the students for planning, implementing and evaluating the social welfare and health care reform in different digital environments.

The aim of the study was to study the overall contents of older home care clients’ electronic care- and service plans based on the Finnish Care Classification. In addition, the aim is to evaluate how the clients’ health behavior and psychological balance have been considered in these care- and service plans. This study is a part of a wider study that will be carried out at the University of Eastern Finland.

Material consisted of 80 care- and service plans made for older people in home care.

Picture 1. Older people. Pixabay.

Lack of inclusion of psychological balance and health behavior in care- and service plans

Psychological balance was mentioned in ten, and health behavior was mentioned in one care-and service plan.

Based on the analysis of care and service plans, psychological balance and health behavior was not included most of the care-and service plans. Studies have been made that suggest that shows how much care- and service plan can have variations in their documentation and in their coverage of different aspects. Psychological balance´s documentation has been minor even though it is one of the aspects included in the evaluation that should be included in the care -and service plan. (Puustinen 2018.)

In addition, in two of the 80 care and service plans it was mentioned that the client had been diagnosed with depression but neither of these plans had Psychological balance included in them.  All sleeping related issues were not included in the “Psychological balance” but in the “Activity”-category. Commonly sleeping issues are being treated as issue that is related to a persons´ psychological balance. Sleeping disorder was mentioned in one care-and service plan.

It was stated in a study conducted before that the confidence of the health professionals working with people with depression increased when they were provided with education about the subject. The symptoms of depression can sometimes go unnoticed or the health professional doesn´t have enough confidence to talk about the symptoms with the older person or/and their family members. (Dow 2015.)

Picture 2. Alone. Pixabay

There was no mention of alcohol usage of smoking in the care- and service plans.

Because there were no mentions of older people smoking or drinking alcohol or other substance use, it seems that the home care professionals may have a lack of confidence to bring these issues to the table so to say. It was stated on an earlier study this is an issue that should be taken to the managers of health care facilities as well as schools for social- and health care studies because there are people who have depressive thoughts and they have a problem with cigarettes or alcohol consumption; someone just needs to talk to them about it. Most of the clients whose care-and service plans were in the data collected were women, so this could explain the lack of smoking in the care- and service plans because less women tend to smoke in this age group than men do. (Dow 2015, Finnish institute for health and welfare 2018.)

Picture 3. Alcohol. Pixabay

So the answer to the question in the topic “Are health behavior and psychological well-being taking into account in older people’s care – and service planning in home care?” is: no. This is a subject that needs to be taken in to account even in the studies of healthcare- and social services workers and more studies about the subject should be conducted in the future.


Reetta Salminen, Student in Master’s Degree Programme in Digital Health, Savonia University of Applied Sciences

Riitta Turjamaa, Development Manager, Savonia University of Applied Sciences


DOW, Briony 2015. Mental Health Virtual Issue Editorial. Mental health and well-being in older people. Australasian Journal on Ageing, Vol 34 No 4 December 2015, 220–223. DOI: 10.1111/ajag.12291

PUUSTINEN, Jonna 2018. Iäkkään asiakkaan hoito- ja palvelusuunnitelman kirjaamisen sisältö kotihoidossa- FinCC-luokituskokonaisuuteen perustuva dokumenttianalyysi. Pro Gradu. University of Eastern Finland. [online publication]. [Accessed 2020-4-2]. Available:

FINNISH INSTITUTE FOR HEALTH AND WELFARE 2018. Tupakkatilasto. [online publication]. [Accessed 2020-4-2]. Available:

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older people, home care, care and service plan, health behavior, psychological balance, nursing documentation, quantitative study, document analysis, Master’s Degree Programme, Digital Health

Are health behavior and psychological well-being taking into account in older people’s care – and service planning in home care?


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