Registered nurses and undergraduate nursing students' attitudes to performing end-of-life care

Sofi Fristedt, Annika Grynne, Christina Melin-Johansson, Ingela Henoch, Carina Lundh Hagelin, Maria Browall

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskriftPeer review


Registered Nurses (RNs) are in the immediate position to provide End-of-life (EOL) care and counselling for patients and families in various settings. However, EOL-care often creates feelings of uncertainty and inadequacy linked to inexperience, lack of education, and attitude. To identify and describe factors associated with RNs' attitudes towards EOL-care, and to identify whether and how these attitudes differ from undergraduate nursing students' (UNSs) attitudes, a descriptive and comparative, quantitative study was performed. The FATCOD-instrument, focusing on attitude towards EOL-care, was used and the results analysed with descriptive and nonparametric statistics. In total, 287 RNs in 14 different specialist programmes, and 124 UNSs participated. A statistically significant difference (p = 0.032) was found in attitude towards EOL-care based on clinical experience. RNs in “Acute Care” and “Paediatric & Psychiatry Care” specialist programmes had a less positive attitude towards EOL-care (compared to RNs in other specialist programmes), while RNs attending the Palliative Care programme had the most positive attitudes. RNs and UNSs' scores differed statistically significantly in 17 out of 30 FATCOD variables. Finally, the results imply that there is a need for greater emphasis on further continuing education within EOL care for RNs working in all types of clinical specialities to encourage RNs talking about death and to enhance attitudes towards EOL care.

TidskriftNurse Education Today
StatusPublished - 2021

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