Wednesday, 9 April 2008

American journal of hospice & palliative care, 2007 Dec-2008 Jan, vol. 24, no. 6

Core competencies in palliative care for surgeons: interpersonal and communication skills.

The American journal of hospice & palliative care, 2007 Dec-2008 Jan, vol. 24, no. 6, p. 499-507, 59 refs
Bradley-Ciaran-T, Brasel-Karen-J.
Author affiliation
Department of Surgery, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53226, USA. cbradley@mcw.edu.
Abstract
Surgeons are an important part of the multidisciplinary approach to the care of terminally ill and dying patients. Some surgical residencies have recognized the need to incorporate palliative care- related topics into graduate surgical education. One core competency of utmost importance to palliative care is the effective use of interpersonal and communication skills. Four areas of surgical practice are identified where these communication skills are important: during preoperative counseling, when presenting a devastating diagnosis or poor prognosis, when discussing error, and when discussing death. Case examples and recommendations for the appropriate words and actions to use in these scenarios are offered. It is important for both surgeons in practice and those in training to achieve proficiency with these communication skills.
Journal-Article, Review.

Nurse views of the adequacy of decision making and nurse distress regarding artificial hydration for terminally ill cancer patients: a nationwide survey.

The American journal of hospice & palliative care, 2007 Dec-2008 Jan (epub: 29 Jun 2007), vol. 24, no. 6, p. 463-9
Author(s)
Miyashita-Mitsunori, Morita-Tatsuya, Shima-Yasuo, Kimura-Rieko, Takahashi-Mikako, Adachi-Isamu.
Author affiliation
Department of Adult Nursing/Palliative Care Nursing, School of Health Sciences and Nursing, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, Japan. miyasita-tky@umin.net.
Abstract
We evaluated nurse views on the adequacy of decision-making discussion among nurses and physicians regarding artificial hydration for terminally ill cancer patients and nurse distress arising from artificial hydration issues, as well as factors related to this distress. A self-administered questionnaire consisting of 4 questions about nurse views of discussions regarding artificial hydration and 6 questions about nurse distress arising from artificial hydration issues was distributed in participating institutions in October 2002 and returned by mail. A total of 3328 responses (79%) were analyzed. Almost half of the nurses felt that discussion of terminal hydration issues was insufficient. Among responses, 39% of oncology nurses and 78% of palliative care unit (PCU) nurses agreed that patients and medical practitioners discuss the issue of artificial hydration adequately, and 49% and 79%, respectively, agreed that medical practitioners discuss the issue of artificial hydration with other physicians adequately. As for distress on behalf of patients and families who refuse artificial hydration, 44% of oncology nurses and 57% of PCU nurses experienced such distress for patients, and 19% and 28% did so for families, respectively. Furthermore, 48% of oncology nurses and 47% of PCU nurses experienced distress arising from disagreements among medical practitioners about withholding artificial hydration, whereas 44% and 43% experienced distress about medical practitioners refusing artificial hydration, respectively. Discussion among care providers regarding artificial hydration is insufficient, particularly in general wards. Medical practitioners caring for terminally ill cancer patients should engage in greater discussion among patient-centered teams and facilitate individualized decision making.

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