The editors of BMC Nursing would like to thank all our reviewers who have contributed to the journal in Volume 12 (2013).
In Spain, family is the main source of care for dependent people. Numerous studies suggest that providing informal (unpaid) care during a prolonged period of time results in a morbidity-generating burden. Caregivers constitute a high-risk group that experiences elevated stress levels, which reduce their quality of life.
Different strategies have been proposed to improve management of this phenomenon in order to minimize its impact, but definitive conclusions regarding their effectiveness are lacking.
A community clinical trial is proposed, with a 1-year follow-up period, that is multicentric, controlled, parallel, and with randomized allocation of clusters in 20 health care centers within the Community of Madrid. The study's objective is to evaluate the effectiveness of a standard care intervention in primary health care (intervention CuidaCare) to improve the quality of life of the caregivers, measured at 0, 6, and 12 months after the intervention.
One hundred and forty two subjects (71 from each group) ≥65 years, identified by the nurse as the main caregivers, and who provide consent to participate in the study will be included.
The main outcome variable will be perceived quality of life as measured by the Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) of EuroQol-5D (EQ-5D). The secondary outcome variables will be EQ-5D Dimensions, EQ-5D Index, nursing diagnosis, and Zarit's test. Prognostic variables will be recorded for the dependent patient and the caregiver.
The principle analysis will be done by comparing the average change in EQ-5D VAS value before and after intervention between the two groups. All statistical tests will be performed as intention-to-treat. Prognostic factors' estimates will be adjusted by mixed-effects regression models. Possible confounding or effect-modifying factors will be taken into account.
Assistance for the caregiver should be integrated into primary care services. In order to do so, incorporating standard, effective interventions with relevant outcome variables such as quality of life is necessary. Community care nurses are at a privileged position to develop interventions like the proposed one.
This trial has been registered in ClinicalTrials.gov under code number NCT 01478295.
Caregivers; Nursing; Primary care; Quality of life; Social support; Psychological adaptation; Caregiver burden
In dementia personhood can be understood as increasingly concealed rather than lost. The sense of being a person evolves in relationships with others. The aim of this study was to increase the understanding of the nature and quality of relationships between persons with dementia, family carers and professional caregivers and how these relationships influenced personhood in people with dementia.
This Norwegian study had a qualitative hermeneutical design based on ten cases. Each case consisted of a triad: the person with dementia, the family carer and the professional caregiver. Inclusion criteria for persons with dementia were (1) 67 years or older (2) diagnosed with dementia (3) Clinical Dementia Rating score 2 ie. moderate dementia (4) able to communicate verbally.
A semi-structured interview guide was used in interviews with family carers and professional caregivers. Field notes were written after participant observation of interactions between persons with dementia and professional caregivers during morning care or activities at a day care centre. Data were analysed in two steps: (1) inductive analysis with an interpretive approach and (2) deductive analysis, applying a theoretical framework for person-centred care.
Relationships that sustained personhood were close emotional bonds between family carers and persons with dementia and professional relationships between caregivers and persons with dementia.
Relationships that diminished personhood were task-centred relationships and reluctant helping relationships between family carers and persons with dementia and unprofessional relationships between caregivers and persons with dementia.
A broad range of relationships was identified. Understanding the complex nature and quality of these relationships added insight as to how they influenced the provision of care and the personhood of persons with dementia. Personhood was not only bestowed upon them by family carers and professional caregivers; they themselves were active agents who gained a sense of self by what they said and did.
Dementia; Relationships; Personhood; Person-centred care
Preterm-born children are at increased risk of adverse developmental outcomes, and their parents may experience increased stress levels. The Mother–Infant Transaction Program (MITP) is an early intervention that aims to enhance the parent–infant relationship and child development. The present study investigated differences in parents’ experience of stress and concerns about caring for their preterm-born child according to whether they participated in the programme. Parental satisfaction with the intervention was also explored.
As part of a follow-up study at 36 months, a randomized controlled trial of the MITP—14 parents of 11 children from the intervention group, and 17 parents of 14 children from the control group were interviewed by the use of semi-structured focus group interviews. The interviews were analysed thematically.
The intervention parents reported that the knowledge, advice, guidance and emotional support given during the intervention made them feel less stressed and more confident, competent and secure caring for their preterm born child than they would otherwise have been. The control parents described feeling less involved and emotionally supported, and seemed more anxious about their child’s development than the intervention parents. All parents were vigilant and alert to their child’s needs and monitored developmental milestones carefully.
This qualitative exploration of the influences of the MITP revealed a positive impact of the intervention and seems to be an important educational and supportive initiative. Thus, reducing parental stress and enhancing confidence in the parental role.
Early intervention; Focus group interviews; Neonatal intensive care unit; NICU; Parental stress; Preterm infant; Public health nurses; Thematic analyses
As soon as Diagnosis related Groups (DRG) were introduced in many hospital financing systems, most nursing research revealed that DRG were not very homogeneous with regard to nursing care. However, few studies are based on All Patient refined Diagnosis related Groups (APR-DRGs) and few of them use recent data. Objectives of this study are: (1) to evaluate if nursing activity is homogeneous by APR-DRG and by severity of illness (SOI) (2) to evaluate the outlier’s rate associated with the nursing activity and (3) to compare nursing cost homogeneity per DRG and SOI.
Study done in 9 Belgian hospitals on a selection of APR-DRG with more than 30 patients (7 638 inpatient stays). The evaluation of the homogeneity is based on coefficients of variation (CV). The 75th percentile + 1.5 × inter-quartile range was used to select high outliers. 25th percentile −1.5 × inter-quartile range was used to select low outliers. Nursing costs per ward were distributed on inpatient stays of each ward following two techniques (the LOS vs. the number of nursing care minutes per stay).
The homogeneity of LOS by DRG and by SOI is relatively good (CV: 0.56). The homogeneity of the nursing activity by DRG is less good (CVs between 0.36 and 1.54) and is influenced by nursing activity outliers (high outliers’ rate: 5.19%, low outliers’ rate: 0.14%). The outlier’s rate varies according to the studied variable. The high outliers’ rate is higher for nursing activity than for LOS. The homogeneity of nursing costs is higher when costs are based on the LOS of patients than when based on minutes of nursing care (CVs between 0.26 and 1.46 for nursing costs based on LOS and between 0.49 and 2.04 for nursing costs based on minutes of nursing care).
It is essential that the calculation of nursing cost by stay and by DRG for hospital financing purposes was based on nursing activity data, that more reflect resources used in wards, and not on LOS data. The only way to obtain this information is the generalization of computerized nursing files.
Nursing cost; DRG; Financing systems; Outliers
Although there is a sizeable body of evidence regarding the nature of hostile behaviours among clinicians in the nursing workplace, what is less clear is the nature of the relationship between these behaviours and patient care. To inform the development of appropriate intervention strategies we examine the level of evidence detailing the relationships between hostile clinician behaviours and patient care.
Published qualitative and quantitative studies that examined hostile clinician behaviours and patient care were included. Quality assessment, data extraction and analysis were undertaken on all included studies. The search strategy was undertaken in July and August 2011 and comprised eight electronic databases (CINAHL, Health Collection (Informit), Medline (Ovid), Ovid Nursing Full Text, Proquest Health and Medicine, PsycInfo, Pubmed and Cochrane library) as well as hand searching of reference lists.
The search strategy yielded 30 appropriate publications. Employing content analysis four themes were refined: physician-nurse relations and patient care, nurse-nurse bullying, intimidation and patient care, reduced nurse performance related to exposure to hostile clinician behaviours, and nurses and physicians directly implicating patients in hostile clinician behaviours.
Our results document evidence of various forms of hostile clinician behaviours which implicate nursing care and patient care. By identifying the place of nurse-nurse hostility in undermining patient care, we focus attention upon the limitations of policy and intervention strategies that have to date largely focused upon the disruptive behaviour of physicians. We conclude that the paucity of robustly designed studies indicates the problem is a comparatively under researched area warranting further examination.
Workplace bullying; Disruptive behaviour; Quality of care; Teamwork; Nurse-physician relations; Work environment; Systematic review
Research evidence supports the positive impact on resident outcomes of nurse practitioners (NPs) working in long term care (LTC) homes. There are few studies that report the perceptions of residents and family members about the role of the NP in these settings. The purpose of this study was to explore the perceptions of residents and family members regarding the role of the NP in LTC homes.
The study applied a qualitative descriptive approach. In-depth individual and focus group interviews were conducted with 35 residents and family members from four LTC settings that employed a NP. Conventional content analysis was used to identify themes and sub-themes.
Two major themes were identified: NPs were seen as providing resident and family-centred care and as providing enhanced quality of care. NPs established caring relationships with residents and families, providing both informational and emotional support, as well as facilitating their participation in decision making. Residents and families perceived the NP as improving availability and timeliness of care and helping to prevent unnecessary hospitalization.
The perceptions of residents and family members of the NP role in LTC are consistent with the concepts of person-centred and relationship-centred care. The relationships NPs develop with residents and families are a central means through which enhanced quality of care occurs. Given the limited use of NPs in LTC settings, there is an opportunity for health care policy and decision makers to address service inadequacies through strategic deployment of NPs in LTC settings. NPs can use their expert knowledge and skill to assist residents and families to make informed choices regarding their health care and maintain a positive care experience.
Nurse practitioner; Long term care; Qualitative descriptive; Perceptions; Residents; Family members; Person-centred care
Heart valve disease is becoming a public health problem due to increasing life expectancy and new treatment methods. Patients are at risk of developing depression, anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder after heart valve surgery. To better plan proper care, describing and understanding patients’ perception of recovery after heart valve replacement is essential. The objective was to describe the experience of recovery at home after heart valve replacement.
Qualitative interviews were conducted with 10 patients representing the population and these were later transcribed. The analysis was inspired by Ricoeur’s theory of interpretation, which consists of three levels: naive reading, structured analysis, and critical interpretation and discussion.
The overall concept that emerged was suffering weakness and struggling to resume normality. Patients all struggled to resume normal living, both in regaining physical strength and in reestablishing balance in overall living. The overall concept can be interpreted in terms of the following themes: Disturbed network: Invaluable relatives, Contact with healthcare staff, Rehabilitation. Disturbed body: Stressful complications, Bodily attention, Physically affected, Physical capability. Recovery: Interrupted living, Suffering weakness, Gradual recovery, Achieving normality. Reflections: Thoughts about the procedure and Feeling sad and fragile.
The study presents the main themes of network, body, recovery and reflection for ten patients after heart valve replacement. These main themes can overall be summarized as suffering weakness and struggling to resume normality. Patients felt weak with a changed body, but after a long recovery process regained vitality and returned to their daily life.
Heart valve disease; Transcatheter aortic valve implantation; Valve surgery; Patient experience; Recovery
There is a scarcity of research published on clinical scholarship. Much of the conceptualisation has been conducted in the academy. Nurse academics espouse that the practice of nursing must be built within a framework of clinical scholarship. A key concept of clinical scholarship emerging from discussions in the literature is that it is an essential component of enabling evidence–based nursing and the development of best practice standards to provide for the needs of patients/clients. However, there is no comprehensive definition of clinical scholarship from the practicing nurses. The aim of this study was to contribute to this definitional discussion on the nature of clinical scholarship in nursing.
Naturalistic inquiry informed the method. Using an interpretative approach 18 practicing nurses from Australia, Canada and England were interviewed using a semi-structured format. The audio-taped interviews were transcribed and the text coded for emerging themes. The themes were sorted into categories and the components of clinical scholarship described by the participants compared to the scholarship framework of Boyer [JHEOE 7:5-18, 2010].
Clinical scholarship is difficult to conceptualise. Two of the essential elements of clinical scholarship are vision and passion. The other components of clinical scholarship were building and disseminating nursing knowledge, sharing knowledge, linking academic research to practice and doing practice-based research.
Academic scholarship dominated the discourse in nursing. However, in order for nursing to develop and to impact on health care, clinical scholarship needs to be explored and theorised. Nurse educators, hospital-based researchers and health organisations need to work together with academics to achieve this goal.
Frameworks of scholarship conceptualised by nurse academics are reflected in the findings of this study with their emphasis on reading and doing research and translating it into nursing practice. This needs to be done in a nonthreatening environment.
Clinical scholarship; Nursing; Research; Practicing nurses
Studies point to the lack of psychosocial support and rehabilitation services that are adjusted to the work-aged stroke survivors’ specific needs in order to promote psychosocial well-being. The aim of the study was to illuminate the psychosocial challenges work-aged participants (i.e. aged 18–67 years) thematised during and after participating a dialogue-based psychosocial intervention during the first year following a stroke.
The study was a feasibility study guided by the UK Medical Research Council Framework for developing and evaluating complex interventions. Qualitative data from in-depth interviews with fourteen stroke-survivors aged 33–66 years, researcher field notes and log notes written during the intervention were analysed applying a hermeneutic-phenomenological approach.
The stroke and its consequences had a substantial impact on family and work life. Their experiences were summarised in the two themes The threat of becoming marginalised in family life and The threat of becoming marginalised in work life.
Life as a work-aged stroke survivor was experienced as challenging and created a threat of becoming marginalised in family and work life. The study highlights the need to understand the specific psychosocial challenges and needs facing work-aged stroke survivors’ in order to promote their psychosocial well-being. More research is needed concerning specific life-span challenges amongst work-aged stroke survivors in order to further develop appropriate interventions that helps address this issue.
Stroke; Work-aged stroke survivors; Marginalisation; Feasibility study; Complex intervention; Qualitative method; Hermeneutic-phenomenological; Rehabilitation
Diabetes is a major health issue for individuals and for health services. There is a considerable literature on the management of diabetes and also on communication in primary care consultations. However, few studies combine these two topics and specifically in relation to nurse communication. This paper describes the nature of nurse-patient communication in diabetes management.
Thirty-five primary health care consultations involving 18 patients and 10 nurses were video-recorded as part of a larger multi-site study tracking health care interactions between health professionals and patients who were newly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Patients and nurses were interviewed separately at the end of the 6-month study period and asked to describe their experience of managing diabetes. The analysis used ethnography and interaction analysis.
In addition to analysis of the recorded consultations and interviews, the number of consultations for each patient and total time spent with nurses and other health professionals were quantified and compared.
This study showed that initial consultations with nurses often incorporated completion of extensive checklists, physical examination, referral to other health professionals and distribution of written material, and were typically longer than consultations with other health professionals. The consultations were driven more by the nurses’ clinical agenda than by what the patient already knew or wanted to know. Interactional analysis showed that protocols and checklists both help and hinder the communication process. This contradictory outcome was also evident at a health systems level: although organisational targets may have been met, the patient did not always feel that their priorities were attended to. Both nurses and patients reported a sense of being overwhelmed arising from the sheer volume of information exchanged along with a mismatch in expectations.
Conscientious nursing work was evident but at times misdirected in terms of optimal use of time. The misalignment of patient expectations and clinical protocols highlights a common dilemma in clinical practice and raises questions about the best ways to balance the needs of individuals with the needs of a health system. Video- recording can be a powerful tool for reflection and peer review.
Patients with pressure ulcers (PUs) report that pain is their most distressing symptom, but there are few PU pain prevalence studies. We sought to estimate the prevalence of unattributed pressure area related pain (UPAR pain) which was defined as pain, soreness or discomfort reported by patients, on an “at risk” or PU skin site, reported at a patient level.
We undertook pain prevalence surveys in 2 large UK teaching hospital NHS Trusts (6 hospitals) and a district general hospital NHS Trust (3 hospitals) during their routine annual PU prevalence audits. The hospitals provide secondary and tertiary care beds in acute and elective surgery, trauma and orthopaedics, burns, medicine, elderly medicine, oncology and rehabilitation. Anonymised individual patient data were recorded by the ward nurse and PU prevalence team. The analysis of this prevalence survey included data summaries; no inferential statistical testing was planned or undertaken. Percentages were calculated using the total number of patients from the relevant population as the denominator (i.e. including all patients with missing data for that variable).
A total of 3,397 patients in 9 acute hospitals were included in routine PU prevalence audits and, of these, 2010 (59.2%) patients participated in the pain prevalence study. UPAR pain prevalence was 16.3% (327/2010). 1769 patients had no PUs and of these 223 patients reported UPAR pain, a prevalence of 12.6%. Of the 241 people with pressure ulcers, 104 patients reported pain, a UPAR pain prevalence of 43.2% (104/241).
One in six people in acute hospitals experience UPAR pain on ‘at risk’ or PU skin sites; one in every 8 people without PUs and, more than 2 out of every five people with PUs. The results provide a clear indication that all patients should be asked if they have pain at pressure areas even when they do not have a PU.
Pain; Pressure ulcers; Risk assessment; Prevalence
The purpose of this study is to compare of the research trends for home care services in Japan and the Republic of Korea (Korea). In particular, it was compared as the research design, the method of data collection, and key words by literature review.
Original articles on home care services were selected from Japanese and Korean journals published from the year of 2004 to 2008. The articles were classified, and compared in terms of the number of articles per year.
The research design was quite different. Quantitative research design was dominantly conducted in Korea, qualitative research design was used same level of design in Japan. In particular, outcome study was shown in Korean.
It is suggested that future collaboration be undertaken to improve the variety of research design and method especially in both countries under the aged society. In addition, it provides information concerning research concepts, which can be applied to optimize future home care services.
Comparative study; Home care services; Japan; Republic of Korea; Research trends
Health practitioners play a pivotal role in providing patients with up-to-date evidence and health information. Evidence-based practice and patient-centred care are transforming the delivery of healthcare in the UK. Health practitioners are increasingly balancing the need to provide evidence-based information against that of facilitating patient choice, which may not always concur with the evidence base. There is limited research exploring how health practitioners working in the UK, and particularly those more autonomous practitioners such as health visitors and practice nurses working in community practice settings, negotiate this challenge. This research provides a descriptive account of how health visitors and practice nurses negotiate the challenges of communicating health information and research evidence in practice.
A total of eighteen in-depth telephone interviews were conducted in the UK between September 2008 and May 2009. The participants comprised nine health visitors and nine practice nurses, recruited via adverts on a nursing website, posters at a practitioner conference and through recommendation. Thematic analysis, with a focus on constant comparative method, was used to analyse the data.
The data were grouped into three main themes: communicating evidence to the critically-minded patient; confidence in communicating evidence; and maintaining the integrity of the patient-practitioner relationship. These findings highlight some of the daily challenges that health visitors and practice nurses face with regard to the complex and dynamic nature of evidence and the changing attitudes and expectations of patients. The findings also highlight the tensions that exist between differing philosophies of evidence-based practice and patient-centred care, which can make communicating about evidence a daunting task.
If health practitioners are to be effective at communicating research evidence, we suggest that more research and resources need to be focused on contextual factors, such as how research evidence is negotiated, appraised and communicated within the dynamic patient-practitioner relationship.
Patients having coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) often depend on their partners for assistance before and after surgery. Whilst patients’ physical and mental health usually improves after surgery little is known about the partners’ health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in CABG. If the partners’ physical and emotional health is poor this can influence their caregiving role and ability to support the patient. This study aimed: to increase understanding of patients’ and partners’ HRQoL before and after CABG; to explore whether patients’ and partners’ pre-operative socio-demographics and HRQoL predict their own, and also partners’ HRQoL 4 months after CABG.
This prospective study recruited 84 dyads (patients 84% males, aged 64.5 years; partners 94% females, aged 61.05 years). Patients’ and partners’ perceived health status was assessed using the Short-Form 12 Health Survey. Patients’ physical limitation, angina symptoms and treatment satisfaction were assessed using the Seattle Angina Questionnaire. Partners’ emotional, physical and social functioning was assessed using the Quality of Life of Cardiac Spouses Questionnaire. Data were analysed using hierarchical multiple (logistic) regressions, repeated measures analysis of variance, paired t test and Chi square.
Patients most likely to have poorer physical health post-operatively were associated with partners who had poorer pre-operative physical health. Partners most likely to have poorer emotional, physical and social functioning post-operatively were associated with patients who had poorer pre-operative mental health. Patients” and partners’ poorer post-operative HRQoL was also explained by their poorer pre-operative HRQoL.
The partners’ involvement should be considered as part of patients’ pre-operative assessment. Special attention needs be paid to patients’ pre-operative mental health since it is likely to impact on their post-operative mental health and the partner’s emotional, physical and social functioning.
Patients; Partners; Coronary artery bypass grafting; Health-related quality of life
The implementation of unfolding scenario-based case studies in the didactic classroom is associated with learner-centered education. The utilization of learner-centered pedagogies, such as case studies, removes the focus from the instructor and instead places it on the student. Learner-centered pedagogies are believed to improve students’ levels of cognition. The purpose of this study was to examine how nurse educators are implementing the pedagogies of case studies in their undergraduate didactic courses. The goal was to examine, document, report, and, ultimately, implement the strategies.
Purposeful sampling was utilized in this qualitative, multisite-designed study. For each of the four participants, three separate site visits were completed. Observations and post-observational interviews took place at each site visit. Transcribed data from interviews, observations, and course documents were imported into the computer program Nvivo8. Repetitive comparative analysis was utilized to complete the data coding process.
The guiding research question of this study sought to investigate the implementation strategies of case studies in didactic nursing courses. The implementation of case studies by the participants reflected two primary patterns: Formal Implementation (FI) and Informal Implementation (II) of case studies. The FI of case studies was further divided into two subcategories: Formal Implementation of case studies used Inside the Classroom setting (FIIC) and Formal Implementation of cases studies used Outside of the Classroom (FIOC).
Results of this investigation have led to an increased understanding of implementation strategies of unfolding scenario-based case studies in undergraduate nursing didactic courses. Data collected were rich in the description of specific methodologies for utilization of case studies and may serve as a resource for faculty in development of creative strategies to enhance the didactic classroom experience.
Case studies; Critical thinking; Facilitative learning; Learner centered; Nurse educators; Pedagogy; Scenario-based case studies; Unfolding case studies
During the last 25 years, cultural diversity has increased substantially with global migration. In more recent years this has become highly evident in the south of Spain with its steadily increasing Moroccan population. The accompanying differences in ethnocultural values and traditions between the host and newcomer populations may greatly impact healthcare interactions and thus also effective provision of care. This landscape provides for excellent exploration of intercultural communication in healthcare settings and elucidation of possible ways to overcome existing barriers to provision of culturally competent care by nurses. This study aimed to ascertain how nurses perceive their intercultural communication with Moroccan patients and what barriers are evident which may be preventing effective communication and care.
A focused ethnography was conducted with semi-structured interviews of 32 nurses in three public hospitals in southern Spain. Interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim before undergoing translation and back-translation between Spanish and English. Data was managed, classified and ordered with the aid of AQUAD.6 (Günter L. Huber, Tübingen, Germany) qualitative data analysis software.
As an important dimension of cultural competence, findings from the interviews with nurses in this study were interpreted within the framework of intercultural communication. Various barriers, for which we have termed “boundaries”, seem to exist preventing effective communication between nurses and their patients. The substantial language barrier seems to negatively affect communication. Relations between the nurses and their Moroccan patients are also marked by prejudices and social stereotypes which likely compromise the provision of culturally appropriate care.
The language barrier may compromise nursing care delivery and could be readily overcome by implementation of professional interpretation within the hospital settings. Moreover, it is essential that the nurses of southern Spain are educated in the provision of culturally appropriate and sensitive care.
Intercultural communication; Cultural competency in nursing; Immigration in Spain; Moroccan immigrants
Knowledge of experiences from prostate cancer is sparse in a longitudinal perspective. From a nursing perspective, results from combined qualitative and quantitative studies are lacking however would present the broadest knowledge base for best practice. Present descriptions of medical-physical symptoms such as urinary, bowel and sexual dysfunction from quantitative inquiries need be complemented with qualitative results. Such knowledge is essential in relation to treatment and communication with patients over the years and not only shortly after surgery.
A longitudinal study was formatted to investigate general and specific health quality and sense of coherence quantitative alterations over three years. A general health quality module (EORTC QLC-C30) and a disease-specific module (EORTC PR-25) were applied for the longitudinal study together with the Orientation to life questionnaire (SOC), measuring a persons’ sense of coherence. In order to strengthen reliability and compensate for low participation we used the Directed content analysis for interviewing and analysis. The method allows using findings from earlier research when interviewing along with detecting new areas. Twenty-one men were followed over three years and six of them, in the third year, accepted to be interviewed.
We found high quality of life ratings and extended the study with follow-up interviews in year three, to investigate whether questionnaire results were in line with interview findings. We found high life quality and functioning ratings that were in line with qualitative descriptions. Interview analysis showed retrieval of life as lived before, yet in a different way, the men never forgot the diagnosis event, had a unique illness history worth hearing, and had come to terms with most treatment-related shortcomings. Sense of coherence ratings were medium to high and confirmed stability over time in comprehensibility, manageability and meaningfulness after prostate cancer treatment.
Over the years, the men’s negative experiences from shifted into ‘a good life’ though in a different way than before. The interpretation is supported in the study by quantitative results showing a high degree of functioning. The men’s sense of coherence seamed to support their handling of life three years after prostate cancer treatment.
Prostate cancer; Longitudinal case study; Quality of life; Sexual life; Sense of coherence; Interview; Mixed method
Those working with elderly care recipients require a good working knowledge of depression and appropriate help giving responses. While it is important for age-care staff to recognize depression in care recipients it is also critical that they know the appropriate course of action to assist a care recipient who may be depressed. This study aims to determine the knowledge of age-care staff of appropriate help giving responses, their confidence in knowing what kind of assistance to provide and their actual likelihood of providing help to potentially depressed care recipients and to examine if these measures improve following an intervention training program.
One hundred and two age-care staff were surveyed on their confidence in helping age-care recipients and on their knowledge of appropriate ways to provide assistance. Staff then participated in a two hour depression awareness raising intervention. The survey was repeated immediately following the training and again six months later.
Staff confidence in knowing how to provide assistance increased significantly subsequent to training and remained significantly improved at the six month follow up. In addition, a significantly higher proportion of staff reported helping care recipients at the six month follow up.
This study highlights the potential of a brief staff training program to provide a cost effective means to improve staff self-confidence and increase the likelihood of staff providing assistance to depressed care recipients.
Depression; Older people; Intervention
This paper presents a discussion related to the recent decision in Australia to introduce mandatory Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for nurses. Historically there has been international debate surrounding mandatory CPD requirements; this debate is ongoing as Australian nurses face a diverse range of CPD offerings from a variety of providers.
The purpose of this paper is to examine how mandatory CPD requirements for national nursing registration in Australia have evolved and to present an analysis of what this will mean for Australian nurses. What is yet to be determined is how to measure professional development and the effectiveness of professional development education. This is important to the international community with consensus in the literature that professional development is linked to ongoing education. Contradicting arguments are presented about whether this professional development should be mandatory.
Presenting a contemporary discussion about the current and potential impact of mandatory CPD requirements for nurses, this discussion paper utilises the case of Australia’s current national policy and CPD operation to examine the choices that nurses make in order to fulfil their legislative requirements. Additional arguments are presented about the barriers nurses face in undertaking CPD. The quest for effective CPD is complex and should incorporate different situations for nurses and individual learning styles.
Mandatory continuing professional development; Nursing registration; Australia; Education; Clinical practice
The editors of BMC Nursing would like to thank all our reviewers who have contributed to the journal in Volume 11 (2012).
Despite the critical role of nursing care in determining high-performing healthcare delivery, performance science in this area is still at an early stage of development and nursing’s contribution most often remains invisible to policy-makers and managers. The objectives of this study were: 1) to develop a theoretically based framework to conceptualize nursing care performance; 2) to analyze how the different components of the framework have been operationalized in the literature; and 3) to develop a pool of indicators sensitive to various aspects of nursing care that can be used as a basis for designing a performance measurement system.
We carried out a systematic review of published literature across three databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE and CINAHL), focusing on literature between 1990 and 2008. Screening of 2,103 papers resulted in final selection of 101 papers. A detailed template was used to extract the data. For the analysis, we used the method of interpretive synthesis, focusing first on 31 papers with theoretical or conceptual frameworks; the remaining 70 articles were used to strengthen and consolidate the findings.
Current conceptualizations of nursing care performance mostly reflect a system perspective that builds on system theory, Donabedian’s earlier works on healthcare organization, and Parsons’ theory of social action. Drawing on these foundational works and the evidence collated, the Nursing Care Performance Framework (NCPF) we developed conceptualizes nursing care performance as resulting from three nursing subsystems that operate together to achieve three key functions: (1) acquiring, deploying and maintaining nursing resources, (2) transforming nursing resources into nursing services, and (3) producing changes in patients’ conditions. Based on the literature review, these three functions are operationalized through 14 dimensions that cover 51 variables. The NCPF not only specifies core aspects of nursing performance, it also provides decision-makers with a conceptual tool to serve as a common ground from which to define performance, devise a common and balanced set of performance indicators for a given sector of nursing care, and derive benchmarks for this sector.
The NCPF provides a comprehensive, integrated and theoretically based model that allows performance evaluation of both the overall nursing system and its subsystems. Such an approach widens the view of nursing performance to embrace a multidimensional perspective that encompasses the diverse aspects of nursing care.
Performance measurement; Nursing care; Systems theory; Quality of care; Nursing structure; Nursing processes; Nursing sensitive outcomes; Systematic review.
To improve the quality of health care in remote parts of Pakistan, a research project was initiated in the mountainous region of Gilgit-Baltistan using information and communication technology to improve patient care and support continuing education of health providers (eHealth). This paper describes the experience of nurses in using eHealth in their routine practices.
All health centres of Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan using eHealth as part of this study, were taken as a single case. These include four primary healthcare centres, three secondary care centres and one medical centre. In-depth interviews were conducted using semi-structured interview guide to study nurses’ perspective about using eHealth, and its perceived impact on their professional lives.
According to the respondents, eHealth enhanced access to care for remote communities, and improved quality of health services by providing opportunities for continuing learning. Nurses also appreciated eHealth for reducing their professional isolation, and providing exposure to new knowledge through teleconsultations and eLearning.
The responses categorized under six major headings include: gaps in health services prior to eHealth; role of eHealth in addressing these gaps; benefits of eHealth; challenges in eHealth implementation; community’s perception about eHealth; and future recommendations.
Low-cost and simple eHealth solutions have shown to benefit nurses, and the communities in the remote mountainous regions of Pakistan.
eHealth; Nurses; Gilgit; Baltistan; Experience; Patient care; Pakistan
Caring for a person with dementia can be physically and emotionally demanding, with many long-term care facility staff experiencing increased levels of stress and burnout. Massage has been shown to be one way in which nurses’ stress can be reduced. However, no research has been conducted to explore its effectiveness for care staff working with older people with dementia in long-term care facilities.
This was a pilot, parallel group, randomized controlled trial aimed at exploring feasibility for a larger randomized controlled trial. Nineteen staff, providing direct care to residents with dementia and regularly working ≥ two day-shifts a week, from one long-term care facility in Queensland (Australia), were randomized into either a foot massage intervention (n=9) or a silent resting control (n=10). Each respective session lasted for 10-min, and participants could receive up to three sessions a week, during their allocated shift, over four-weeks. At pre- and post-intervention, participants were assessed on self-report outcome measures that rated mood state and experiences of working with people with dementia. Immediately before and after each intervention/control session, participants had their blood pressure and anxiety measured. An Intention To Treat framework was applied to the analyses. Individual qualitative interviews were also undertaken to explore participants’ perceptions of the intervention.
The results indicate the feasibility of undertaking such a study in terms of: recruitment; the intervention; timing of intervention; and completion rates. A change in the intervention indicated the importance of a quiet, restful environment when undertaking a relaxation intervention. For the psychological measures, although there were trends indicating improvement in mood there was no significant difference between groups when comparing their pre- and post- scores. There were significant differences between groups for diastolic blood pressure (p= 0.04, partial η2=0.22) and anxiety (p= 0.02, partial η2=0.31), with the foot massage group experiencing greatest decreases immediately after the session. The qualitative interviews suggest the foot massage was well tolerated and although taking staff away from their work resulted in some participants feeling guilty about taking time out, a 10-min foot massage was feasible during a working shift.
This pilot trial provides data to support the feasibility of the study in terms of recruitment and consent, the intervention and completion rates. Although the outcome data should be treated with caution, the pilot demonstrated the foot massage intervention showed trends in improved mood, reduced anxiety and lower blood pressure in long-term care staff working with older people with dementia. A larger study is needed to build on these promising, but preliminary, findings.
Anxiety; Blood pressure; Care staff; Complementary and alternative medicine; Dementia; Long-term care; Massage; Mood state; Pilot; Randomized controlled trial
Chronic wounds are managed almost entirely by community nurses. Almost all individuals with leg ulcers report acute pain usually related to dressing change. Little is known about pain after healing. The purpose of this study was to explore the course of pain from baseline to time of healing of leg ulcers (venous or mixed etiology). In order to understand this phenomenon and develop implications for nursing practice, objectives included: 1) Measure incidence and prevalence of pain at baseline and healing; 2) Describe characteristics associated with leg ulcer pain at baseline; 3) Identify predictors of leg ulcer pain at healing.
Data were from one randomized controlled trial (2004-2008) of 424 individuals with leg ulcers in the community receiving evidence-informed nursing management. The primary outcome was pain at the time of healing. Predictive factors included demographic, circumstance of living, clinical and ulcer characteristics. Multivariable logistic regression identified the subset of predictors of pain at healing. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) are reported.
Eighty-two percent of participants reported pain at baseline and 32% at healing. Five percent with no pain at baseline reported pain at healing. Thirty-seven percent reported moderate to severe pain at baseline and 11% at healing. Twenty percent of all those who healed reported pain interfered with work moderately to extremely at time of healing. Being female (OR=1.64, 95% CI 1.00, 2.68, p=0.05), use of short-stretch vs. four-layer bandages (OR=1.73, 95% CI 1.06, 2.82, p=0.03), lower SF-12 PCS (OR=0.97, 95% CI 0.94, 0.99, p=0.02) and MCS (OR=0.98, 95% CI 0.95-1.00, p=0.04) scores, use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (OR=2.28, 95% CI 1.06, 4.88, p=0.03), and tender pain (OR=2.17, 95% CI 1.29, 3.66, p=<0.01) were associated with pain at time of healing.
Pain is an issue on admission for chronic wounds and at healing, yet 58% with moderate to severe pain on admission were not taking pain medication(s). Future studies should examine the role of pain at healing and at subsequent ulcer recurrence. Mobility and other factors that may contribute to pain at time of healing should also be assessed. Community nurses are encouraged to consider pain when planning care on admission and also after wound healing, when most patients are discharged from care.
Pain; Health-related quality of life; Chronic conditions; Leg ulcers; Community care nursing; Longitudinal study, Canada