Purpose: This study aimed to explore older adults’ perceptions of their daily lives in South Korean nursing homes. Design: We employed a qualitative descriptive study using semistructured interviews. Methods: We conducted individual, semistructured interviews with 21 older adult residents from five nursing homes in South Korea and analyzed the data using thematic analysis. Findings: Five themes related to older adults’ perceptions of their daily lives in nursing homes emerged: enhanced comfort, aspiring to maintain physical and cognitive functions as human beings, desire for meaningful interpersonal relationships, feelings of confinement and limited autonomy, and acceptance of and adaptation to life in a facility. These themes indicated the positive and negative aspects of nursing home residence, and facilitators and challenges to enhancing older adult residents’ quality of life (QOL). Conclusions: Policy, practice, and research endeavors are required to improve older adult residents’ QOL, such as adequate professional nursing care for physical and psychological comfort and residents’ health and functional status, sufficient activity programs and meaningful relationships, person-centered care to enhance residents’ autonomy, and homelike environments. Clinical Relevance: This study demonstrates that healthcare providers, researchers, and policymakers should consider nursing home residents’ QOL to examine the quality of care within the setting and facilitate the development of appropriate strategies to improve QOL among this population.
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