Transição para o papel de membro da família prestador de cuidados da pessoa com deficiência mental profunda

  • Maria Inês Pinto Caçoilo (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


People with profound mental disabilities have the Intelligence Quotient below average, significant disability to adapt to society and a high dependency on self-care, requiring replacement care and support throughout life, implying the continuous presence of a caregiver. The existence of very particular needs that require individualized and detailed answers influences the transition to the role of caregiver, seen as a complex process but sensitive to nurse’s knowledge, potentially useful to improve care and reduce the impact and the felt difficulties. Therefore the professional practice of nursing covers the preparation and empowerment of caregiver provider in its role, responding to the human needs of both the person with mental retardation as their caregiver. With this foundation, we designed a qualitative study with method based on Grounded Theory in order to understand the phenomenon and describe the transition of family adapted to the role of caregivers of people with profound mental disabilities, as well as identify Nursing therapeutics possible to implement. We opted to choose participants with adult children, so a retrospective process, could describe the transition experienced. The first participant selected was a nurse in order to identify the influence of nursing knowledge in the adaptation to the role and caring. The remaining participants were being selected to enhance or to increase the collected data. The study shows that an impact arises on caregiver when he takes knowledge of mental retardation in his family member. He starts working the new reality, from which arise a set of critical events that are overcome through strategies adopted or developed by the caregiver. Facilitating and inhibiting factors of transition are identified and process indicators arise. Outcome indicators emerge as personal changes and a familiar process in the mastery of caregiving. It was found that participants with nursing knowledge have a greater range of strategies and facilitating factors comparing to the other ones.
Date of Award2015
Original languagePortuguese
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorLuís Sá (Supervisor) & Armando Manuel Gonçalves de Almeida (Supervisor)


  • Caregiver
  • Intellectual disability
  • Transition


  • Mestrado em Enfermagem

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