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Geriatric patients in intermediate care (IC) often do not feel involved in their rehabilitation process. We conducted interviews with 15 patients and 12 relatives to explore their experiences and preferences regarding patient participation in IC and identify types of patient participation and their potential empowering or disempowering effect. The analysis disclosed a lack of patient choice in a predetermined IC pathway. Being deserving of help meant being sick enough and was associated with the compliant patient who fits the system. Some main additional features were the need of a rehabilitation perspective and patient engagement to enable coproduction as well as the important contribution of relatives as advocates and allies. Finally, the results show the patients’ vulnerable voice in the meeting with the experts’ views. The study will add important knowledge on how staff can contribute to the tailoring of good interventions in IC and improve the understanding of underlying structures.
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