Post-place care: disrupting place-care ontologies
With the advent of telecare and the logic of information technologies in health care, the idea of placeless care has taken root, capturing imaginations and promising placeless caring futures. This ‘de-territorialisation of care’ has been challenged by studies of care practices ‘on the ground’, showing that care is always (materially) placed. Yet, while sociological scholarship has taken the role of place seriously, there is little conceptual attention for how we may think through immateriality and the changing nature of place in health care. Based on a case study of the introduction of a sensory reality technology into a care organisation, this paper argues that we need (1) to push the definition of placed care into new (digitally produced) landscapes and (2) a new vocabulary, with which to address and conceptualise this changing nature of care places. The paper introduces the term post-place, as a first step in developing such a vocabulary. Post-place care, unlike the idea of placeless care or emplaced care, is an inclusive, open and generative concept. Its strength lies in its disruptive potential for challenging existing place-care ontologies and opening up productive space for thinking through the changing landscapes of health care.