To describe Swedish first-year undergraduate nursing students' attitudes toward care of dying patients. Possible influences such as age, earlier care experiences, care education, experiences of meeting dying patients and place of birth were investigated.
The Frommelt Attitude Toward Care of the Dying Scale (FATCOD) was used in six universities. Descriptive statistics and regression analysis were used.
Some 371 students (67.3%) reported overall positive attitude toward caring for dying patients (total mean FATCOD 119.5, SD 10.6) early in their first semester. Older students, students with both earlier care experience and earlier education, those with experience of meeting a dying person, and students born in Sweden reported the highest scores, a more positive attitude.
Age, earlier care experience and education, experiences of meeting a dying person and place of birth seems to affect students' attitudes toward care of the dying and need to be considered among nursing educators.
In 2007, a literature review was undertaken of palliative care research from Sweden during the 1970s-2006, paving the way for a follow-up study to explore the recent developments. The aim was to systematically examine palliative care research from Sweden between 2007 and 2012, with special attention to methods, designs and research foci.
A literature review was undertaken. The databases Academic search elite, Age line, Ahmed, Cinahl, PsychInfo, PubMed, Scopus, Soc abstracts, Web of science and Libris were reviewed for Swedish palliative care research studies published from 2007 to 2012, applying the search criteria 'palliative care OR palliative medicine OR end-of-life care OR terminal care OR hospice care OR dying OR death'.
A total of 263 papers met the inclusion criteria, indicating an increased volume of research compared to the 133 articles identified in the previous review. Common study foci were symptom assessment and management, experiences of illness and care planning. Targeting non-cancer-specific populations and utilisation of population-based register studies were identified as new features. There was continued domination of cross-sectional, qualitative and mono-disciplinary studies, not including ethnic minority groups, nonverbally communicable people or children
Those who are seriously ill and facing death are often living with physical, emotional, social, and spiritual suffering. Teamwork is considered to be necessary to holistically meet the diverse needs of patients in palliative care. Reviews of studies regarding palliative care team outcomes have concluded that teams provide benefits, especially regarding pain and symptom management. Much of the research concerning palliative care teams has been performed from the perspective of the service providers and has less often focused on patients' and families' experiences of care.
Our aim was to investigate how the team's work is manifested in care episodes narrated by patients and families in specialized palliative home care (SPHC).
A total of 13 interviews were conducted with patients and families receiving specialized home care. Six patients and seven family members were recruited through SPHC team leaders. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and the transcripts qualitatively analyzed into themes.
Two themes were constructed through thematic analysis: (1) security ("They are always available," "I get the help I need quickly"); and (2) continuity of care ("They know me/us, our whole situation and they really care"). Of the 74 care episodes, 50 were descriptions of regularly scheduled visits, while 24 related to acute care visits and/or interventions.
Patients' and family members' descriptions of the work of SPHC teams are conceptualized through experiences of security and continuity of care. Experiences of security are fostered through the 24/7 availability of the team, sensitivity and flexibility in meeting patients' and families' needs, and practical adjustments to enable care at home. Experiences of continuity of care are fostered through the team's collective approach, where the individual team member knows the patients and family members, including their whole situation, and cares about the little things in life as well as caring for the family unit.
Teamwork is a standard of care in palliative care and that is emphasized by leading organizations. When interdisciplinary teams communicate their varied assessments, outcomes may be more than additive due to the synthesis of information. Interprofessionality does not guarantee multidimensionality in health care interventions, however, and that interprofessional teams promote collaboration may be questioned.
The aim was to explore team interaction among team members in specialized palliative care teams.
Semistructured interviews were conducted with health professionals working in specialized palliative home care teams. The interviews were analyzed by content analysis.
Participants were recruited from specialized palliative care units in Sweden. The 15 interviewees included 4 men and 11 women. Physcians, nurses, paramedical staff, and social workers were included.
Organizational issues like resources and leadership have a great impact on delivery of care. Competence was mirrored in education, collaboration, approach, and support within the team; while communication was described as key to being a team, resolving conflict, and executing palliative care.
Communication and communication patterns within the team create the feeling of being a team. Team climate and team performance are significantly impacted by knowledge and trust of competence in colleagues, with other professions, and by the available leadership. Proportions of different health professionals in the team have an impact on the focus and delivery of care. Interprofessional education giving clarity on one's own professional role and knowledge of other professions would most likely benefit patients and family caregivers.
To expand our clinical and scientific knowledge about holistic outcomes within palliative care, there is a need for agreed-upon patient-reported outcome measures. These patient-reported outcome measures then require translation and cultural adaptation, either from country-specific languages to English, or the other way around. The aim of this study was to translate and cross-culturally adapt the Integrated Palliative care Outcome Scale (IPOS) to the Swedish care context.
Swedish versions of IPOS Patient and IPOS Staff were developed and culturally adapted using recommended guidelines including cognitive interviews with patients (n = 13) and staff (n = 15) from different care contexts including general and specialised palliative care.
The comprehension and judgement difficulties identified in the pre-final patient and staff versions were successfully solved during the cognitive interviewing process. IPOS was well accepted by both patients and staff, none of the questions were experienced as inappropriate, and all questions were judged important.
In this study, we translated and culturally adapted the patient and staff versions of IPOS, and demonstrated face and content validity and acceptability of the scale through cognitive interviewing with patients and staff within residential care facility, surgical and specialised palliative home care units. Cognitive interviewing in parallel with patients and staff in rounds, with tentative analysis in between, was a suitable method for identifying and solving challenges with comprehension and evaluation in the pre-final version of IPOS. The Swedish IPOS is now available for use in a variety of clinical care settings.
Cites: Qual Life Res. 2010 Jun;19(5):739-50 PMID 20229190
The study aimed to describe end of life for patients treated with maintenance haemodialysis as narrated by their close relatives.
Many patients undergoing haemodialysis are older, have several comorbidities and underestimated symptoms and are in their last year of life. To improve care, we need to know more about their end-of-life situation.
Qualitative and descriptive.
Qualitative retrospective interviews were conducted with 14 close relatives of deceased haemodialysis patients (3-13 months after death). Data were analysed using qualitative content analysis. The study is ethically approved.
In the last months, a gradual deterioration in health with acute episodes necessitating hospital admissions was described. This involved diminishing living space and expressions of dejection, but also of joy. Three patterns emerged in the last weeks: uncertain anticipation of death as life fades away; awaiting death after haemodialysis withdrawal; and sudden but not unexpected death following intensive care. Findings show complexities of decisions on haemodialysis withdrawal.
Different end-of-life patterns all involved increasingly complex care needs and existential issues. Findings show a need for earlier care planning. The identification of organisational factors to facilitate continuity and whole person care to meet these patients' specific care needs with their complex symptom burdens and comorbidities is needed. Findings indicate the need for integration of a palliative care approach in the treatment of patients in haemodialysis care.