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
Spiritual needs of cancer patients should be assessed and discussed by healthcare professionals. Neurosurgical nurses need to be able to assess and support neuro-oncology patients with their spiritual needs from diagnosis and throughout their hospital stay.
Data were collected through questionnaires using a Critical Incident Technique (CIT) from neurosurgical nurses, findings were analysed using thematic analysis.
Nurses reported some awareness of their patients’ spiritual needs during their stay on neurosurgical units although some used expressions approximating what could be described as spiritual needs. Patients’ spiritual needs were identified as: need to talk about spiritual concerns, showing sensitivity to patients’ emotions, responding to religious needs; and relatives’ spiritual needs included: supporting them with end of life decisions, supporting them when feeling being lost and unbalanced, encouraging exploration of meaning of life, and providing space, time and privacy to talk. Participants appeared largely to be in tune with their patients’ spiritual needs and reported that they recognised effective strategies to meet their patients’ and relatives’ spiritual needs. However, the findings also suggest that they don’t always feel prepared to offer spiritual support for neuro-oncology patients.
There is a need for healthcare professionals to provide spiritual care for neuro-oncology patients and their relatives. Although strategies were identified that nurses can use to support patients with spiritual needs further research is required to explore how effective nurses are at delivering spiritual care and if nurses are the most appropriate professionals to support neuro-oncology patients with spiritual care.
Spirituality; Spiritual care; Neuro-oncology; Critical incident techniques
At the time of this study (2009) the role of the nurse practitioner was new to the province of British Columbia. The provincial government gave the responsibility for implementing the role to health authorities. Managers of health authorities, many of whom were unfamiliar with the role, were responsible for identifying the need for the NP role, determining how the NP would function, and gaining team members’ acceptance for the new role.
The purpose of the study was to explain the process of nurse practitioner role implementation as it was occurring and to identify factors that could enhance the implementation process. An explanatory, single case study with embedded units of analysis was used. The technique of explanation building was used in data analysis. Three primary health care settings in one health authority in British Columbia were purposively selected. Data sources included semi-structured interviews with participants (n=16) and key documents.
The results demonstrate the complexity of implementing a new role in settings unfamiliar with it. The findings suggest that early in the implementation process and after the nurse practitioner was hired, team members needed to clarify intentions for the role and they looked to senior health authority managers for assistance. Acceptance of the nurse practitioner was facilitated by team members’ prior knowledge of either the role or the individual nurse practitioner. Community health care providers needed to be involved in the implementation process and their acceptance developed as they gained knowledge and understanding of the role.
The findings suggest that the interconnectedness of the concepts of intention, involvement and acceptance influences the implementation process and how the nurse practitioner is able to function in the setting. Without any one of the three concepts not only is implementation difficult, but it is also challenging for the nurse practitioner to fulfill role expectations. Implications for research, policy, practice and education are discussed.
Nurse practitioner; Implementation; Role; Barriers; Facilitators; Role implementation; Primary care
Despite the strong influence of culture on family involvement in disease management, few studies have examined how immigrant families care for persons with mental illness. The purpose of this study was to examine how immigrant families organize their world to care for a mentally ill person in the United States. The current analysis focused on how Confucian notions of filial piety and parental obligation shape caregiving in Korean immigrant families.
Participants in this interpretive phenomenological study were comprised of six Korean immigrant women caring for a family member with mental illness. Participants provided narratives that illustrate challenges and opportunities in caring for their mentally ill family member.
Three family caregiving patterns were discerned. Insulating from the outside world describes a family’s effort to accept a member's illness and to manage it within the family. Prioritizing education over well-being concerns parental commitment to the Confucian priority of educating one’s children. Reciprocating the sacrifice describes how a family adapts and enacts filial piety.
The findings of this study warrant further study to examine the influence of Confucianism among Korean American families. The three patterns of caregiving are strongly aligned with Confucian notion of family and family engagement. These patterns may help health providers to anticipate the needs of and provide individualized, culturally appropriate mental health care for patients with mental illness and their families of Korean origin.
Family caregiving; Immigrant family; Korean Americans; Confucianism
The current healthcare climate is characterized by a constant battle for the provision of quality care with limited resources and with patient satisfaction receiving increased attention, there is a need for reliable and valid assessment measures. This study describes the adaptation, testing and validation of the Risser Patient satisfaction Scale in an oncology care setting in Greece. The rationale for this study lies in the scarcity of such measures in the Greek language.
This is a test retest validation study in Greece. Data were collected from 298 hospitalized cancer patients. The validation methodology included the assessment of the item internal consistency, using the Cronbach alpha coefficient. The test-retest reliability was tested by the Kappa correlation coefficient.
The scale demonstrated very good psychometric properties. The internal consistency of the instrument was good, Cronbach’s alpha was found to be 0.78 (p<0.001) and Kappa coefficient for reproducibility was found to be K=0.89 (95% CI: 0.83-0.91 p<0.0001).
The findings demonstrated strong agreement of the scale, suggesting that the Greek version offers substantial reliability. This study provides a valid and reliable tool to assess patient satisfaction in oncology settings. Means to monitor patient satisfaction, a key aspect of the policy agenda for quality care remain important for nurse leaders to develop better care in oncology settings.
Nursing care; Patient satisfaction; Validation; Risser patient satisfaction scale; Cancer settings; Cancer patients
Nursing education necessitates vigilance for clinical safety, a daunting challenge given the complex interchanges between students, patients and educators. As active learners, students offer a subjective understanding concerning safety in the practice milieu that merits further study. This study describes the viewpoints of senior undergraduate nursing students about compromised safety in the clinical learning environment.
Q methodology was used to systematically elicit multiple viewpoints about unsafe clinical learning from the perspective of senior students enrolled in a baccalaureate nursing program offered at multiple sites in Ontario, Canada. Across two program sites, 59 fourth year students sorted 43 theoretical statement cards, descriptive of unsafe clinical practice. Q-analysis identified similarities and differences among participant viewpoints yielding discrete and consensus perspectives.
A total of six discrete viewpoints and two consensus perspectives were identified. The discrete viewpoints at one site were Endorsement of Uncritical Knowledge Transfer, Non-student Centered Program and Overt Patterns of Unsatisfactory Clinical Performance. In addition, a consensus perspective, labelled Contravening Practices was identified as responsible for compromised clinical safety at this site. At the other site, the discrete viewpoints were Premature and Inappropriate Clinical Progression, Non-patient Centered Practice and Negating Purposeful Interactions for Experiential Learning. There was consensus that Eroding Conventions compromised clinical safety from the perspective of students at this second site.
Senior nursing students perceive that deficits in knowledge, patient-centered practice, professional morality and authenticity threaten safety in the clinical learning environment. In an effort to eradicate compromised safety associated with learning in the clinical milieu, students and educators must embody the ontological, epistemological and praxis fundamentals of nursing.
Nursing education; Q-Methodology; Safety; Clinical learning; Student perspectives
Patients are at risk of developing pressure injuries in the peri-operative setting. Studies evaluating the impact of educational interventions on peri-operative nurses’ knowledge and reported practice are scarce. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of a multifaceted intervention on peri-operative nurses’ (a) knowledge of pressure injury risks, risk assessment and prevention strategies for patients in the operating suite; and (b) reported practice relating to risk assessment practices and implementation of prevention strategies for patients in the operating suite.
A before-after research design was used. A convenience sample of all registered and enrolled nurses employed in two hospitals’ operating suites was recruited. A multifaceted intervention was delivered which comprised a short presentation, educational materials and reminder posters. A 48-item survey tool was completed pre-and post-intervention to measure self-reported knowledge and practice.
70 eligible peri-operative nurses completed both surveys. Post-intervention, statistically significant improvements were seen in knowledge of correct descriptions of pressure injury stages (p=0.001); appropriate reassessment for patients with a new pressure injury (p=0.05); appropriate actions for patients with an existing stage 1 (p=0.02) and stage 2 pressure injury (p=0.04). Statistical improvements were also seen in reported practice relating to an increase in the use of a risk assessment tool in conjunction with clinical judgement (p=0.0008); verbal handover of patients’ pressure injury risk status from the operating room nurse to the recovery room (p=0.023) and from the recovery room nurse to the postoperative ward nurse (p=0.045). The number of participants reporting use of non-recommended and recommended pressure-relieving strategies was unchanged.
A multi-faceted educational intervention can improve some aspects of perioperative nurses’ knowledge and reported practice such as risk assessment practices but not others such as use of recommended pressure-relieving devices. Further research is required to ascertain effective interventions which improve all areas of practice and knowledge, particularly in the use of appropriate pressure-relieving devices in order to prevent pressure injuries in surgical patients.
Pressure injury; Peri-operative; Nurses; Educational intervention; Prevention; Risk assessment
Day surgery holds advantages for both the patient and the health care organization. However, recovery beyond the first postoperative week and following different types of surgery has not been explored to any greater degree. The current aims were to prospectively describe postoperative recovery and health-related quality of life among different groups of day surgery patients and to explore the association between postoperative recovery and health-related quality of life 30 days after discharge.
A consecutive sample of 607 adult day surgery patients undergoing orthopaedic, gynaecological or general surgery was included. Postoperative recovery was assessed on days 1, 7 and 14 using the Swedish Post-discharge Surgery Recovery scale and the Quality of Recovery-23 scale. The EQ-5D was used to assess health-related quality of life preoperatively and 30 days following discharge. A repeated measure ANOVA was conducted to evaluate postoperative recovery from day 1 to day 14 and between different surgical groups. Hierarchical multiple linear regression models were used to explore the association between postoperative recovery and health-related quality of life.
Postoperative recovery improved from day 1 to 14 in all surgical groups (p<0.001). The orthopaedic patients had lower postoperative recovery on day 14 compared to the general and the gynaecological patients (p<0.001). Health-related quality of life was lower among orthopaedic patients (p<0.001), even if significant improvements over time were seen in all groups. Recovery on day 7 was associated with health-related quality of life 30 days after the day surgery (p<0.05).
Particularly orthopaedic day surgical patients seem to favour a closer follow-up in order to support recovery and thereby also positively influence health-related quality of life.
Ambulatory surgical procedures; Nursing; Quality of life; Recovery of function
The role of Australian general practice nurses (PNs) has developed exponentially since the introduction of service based funding in 2005. In particular, their role has expanded to include cervical screening and well women’s health care services provided under the supervision of a general practitioner (GP). While previous research identifies barriers to the provision of these services, this study sought to investigate enablers for nurse led care in this area.
A number of grounded theory methods including constantly comparing data, concurrent data collection and analysis and theoretical sampling are utilised in this qualitative, exploratory study. A purposive sample of PNs who completed the required program of education in order to provide cervical screening and well women’s health care services was recruited to the study. Data is presented in categories, however a limitation of the study is that a fully integrated grounded theory was unable to be produced due to sampling constraints.
Four enablers for the implementation of a change in the PN role to include cervical screening and well women’s health checks are identified in this study. These enablers are: GPs being willing to relinquish the role of cervical screener and well women’s health service provider; PNs being willing to expand their role to include cervical screening and well women’s health services; clients preferring a female practice nurse to meet their cervical screening and well women’s health needs; and the presence of a culture that fosters interprofessional teamwork. Seven strategies for successfully implementing change from the perspective of PNs are also constructed from the data. This study additionally highlights the lack of feedback on smear quality provided to PNs cervical screeners and well women’s health service providers.
The influence of consumers on the landscape of primary care service delivery in Australia is of particular note in this study. Developing interprofessional teams that maximise each health care provider’s role will be fundamental to comprehensive service delivery in the future.
Early detection of breast cancer is vital to effective management and outcome of breast cancer. It has been suggested that women given information and instruction about breast self- examination and breast awareness by health care professionals demonstrated higher knowledge and confidence and tend to practice breast self-examination more than those who received information from other sources. Breast Self-Examination (BSE) and Clinical Breast Examination (CBE) have been recommended as Early Detection Measures (EDM) for developing countries. This study evaluated Primary Health Care (PHC) nurses’ knowledge, practice and client teaching of EDM of breast cancer.
A descriptive study that utilized stratified random method to select PHC settings for the study. Data was collected from 120 trained nurses in selected settings. This represented 66.3% of total population of PHC nurses (181) in Ibadan. The instrument for data collection was a structured questionnaire that explored the bio data of participants, knowledge, practice and client teaching of EDMs of breast cancer. Ethical approval was obtained from the Ethical Review Committee of Oyo State Ministry of Health, Nigeria.
The mean age of the participants was 44.4±7.5 years. About half (52.2%) were double qualified (Registered Nurse and Midwife). Only 23 (20.0%) of the participants considered painless lump as an early sign of breast cancer while 47 (40.9%) considered pain as an early sign. BSE was listed as EDM of breast cancer by 80.9% of the participants while 40% and 30% listed CBE and mammogram respectively. Only eight (7.9%) have had a mammogram. The logistic regression of client teaching on four variables showed that for every increase in knowledge of breast cancer the odds of client teaching significantly increased by 7.5% (95% CI = 1.27 - 1.125). There were also significant relationships between knowledge of EDM, practice of BSE and client teaching.
It is vital that attention should be given to enhance breast cancer EDMs among the PHC nurses to be able to enhance health deviation self-care of the clients. Nurses’ knowledge, practice as well as client teaching especially at PHC level, will contribute to early detection of breast cancer.
Primary health care nurses; Breast self-examination; Clinical breast examination; Mammography; Client teaching
To clarify the current state of communication between clinical nursing educators and nursing faculty members and the perceived difficulties encountered while teaching nursing students in clinical training in Japan.
We collected data via focus group interviews with 14 clinical nursing educators, two nursing technical college teachers, and five university nursing faculty members. Interview transcripts were coded to express interview content as conclusions for each unit of meaning. Similar compiled content was categorized.
Difficulties in providing clinical training mentioned by both clinical educators and faculty members were classified into four categories: “difficulties with directly exchanging opinions,” “mismatch between school-required teaching content and clinical teaching content,” “difficulties with handling students who demonstrate a low level of readiness for training,” and “human and time limitations in teaching.” In some categories, the opinions of educators matched those of the faculty members, whereas in others, the problems differed according to position.
The Japanese culture and working conditions may affect communication between clinical educators and faculty members; however, a direct “opinion exchange” between them is crucial for improving the clinical teaching environment in Japan.
Reporting the professional errors for improving patient safety is considered essential not only in hospitals, but also in ambulatory care centers. Unfortunately, a great number of nurses, similar to most clinicians, do not report their errors. Therefore, the present study aimed to clarify the factors associated with reporting the nursing errors through the experiences of clinical nurses and nursing managers.
A total of 115 nurses working in the hospitals and specialized clinics affiliated to Tehran and Shiraz Universities of Medical Sciences, Iran participated in this qualitative study. The study data were collected through a semi-structured group discussion conducted in 17 sessions and analyzed by inductive content analysis approach.
The main categories emerged in this study were: a) general approaches of the nurses towards errors, b) barriers in reporting the nursing errors, and c) motivators in error reporting.
Error reporting provides extremely valuable information for preventing future errors and improving the patient safety. Overall, regarding motivators and barriers in reporting the nursing errors, it is necessary to enact regulations in which the ways of reporting the error and its constituent elements, such as the notion of the error, are clearly identified.
Nursing errors; Barriers; Motivators; Patient safety
Spirituality is a subjective and multi-dimensional concept. The ambiguity in its meaning can create barriers in its application in both education and medicine. The present study aimed to explore the Iranian cancer patients’ perception of spirituality.
A qualitative study, using the content analysis approach, was conducted. Semi-structured interviews were held with 11 cancer patients and six members of their families in one of Tehran’s hospitals and a charity institute. The data generated were transcribed verbatim and content analysis approach was used for data reduction, naming data, obtaining analytical code and determining categories and themes.
Three themes (and seven sub-themes) emerged from the data analysis: 1) God as the spiritual truth (relationship with God and trust in God), 2) Moralities as a spiritual sign (considering personal and social moral codes) and 3) Spiritual resources as the source of hope (religious, personal and social resources).
Overall, in the view of cancer patients, spirituality can be defined in a religious context. However, some of them believe in morality beside religiosity, so health care staff must pay due attention to these aspects, to provide them with the opportunity to use spiritual resources.
Spirituality; Perception; Experience; Cancer patients; Content analysis
To describe a funded proposal for the development of an on-line evidence based educational program for the management of deteriorating patients.
There are international concerns regarding the management of deteriorating patients with issues around the ‘failure to rescue’. The primary response to these issues has been the development of medical emergency teams with little focus on the education of primary first responders.
A mixed methods triangulated convergent design.
In this four phase proposal we plan to 1. examine nursing student team ability to manage deteriorating patients and based upon these findings 2. develop web based educational material, including interactive scenarios. This educational material will be tested and refined in the third Phase 3, prior to evaluation and dissemination in the final phase.
This project aims to enhance knowledge development for the management of deteriorating patients through rigorous assessment of team performance and to produce a contemporary evidence-based online training program.
Education; Nursing; Patient deterioration; Simulation
To strengthen the mental well-being of close family of persons newly diagnosed as having cancer, it is necessary to acquire a greater understanding of their experiences of social support networks, so as to better assess what resources are available to them from such networks and what professional measures are required. The main aim of the present study was to explore the meaning of these networks for close family of adult persons in the early stage of treatment for advanced lung or gastrointestinal cancer. An additional aim was to validate the study’s empirical findings by means of the Finfgeld-Connett conceptual model for social support. The intention was to investigate whether these findings were in accordance with previous research in nursing.
Seventeen family members with a relative who 8–14 weeks earlier had been diagnosed as having lung or gastrointestinal cancer were interviewed. The data were subjected to qualitative latent content analysis and validated by means of identifying antecedents and critical attributes.
The meaning or main attribute of the social support network was expressed by the theme Confirmation through togetherness, based on six subthemes covering emotional and, to a lesser extent, instrumental support. Confirmation through togetherness derived principally from information, understanding, encouragement, involvement and spiritual community. Three subthemes were identified as the antecedents to social support: Need of support, Desire for a deeper relationship with relatives, Network to turn to. Social support involves reciprocal exchange of verbal and non-verbal information provided mainly by lay persons.
The study provides knowledge of the antecedents and attributes of social support networks, particularly from the perspective of close family of adult persons with advanced lung or gastrointestinal cancer. There is a need for measurement instruments that could encourage nurses and other health-care professionals to focus on family members’ personal networks as a way to strengthen their mental health. There is also a need for further clarification of the meaning of social support versus caring during the whole illness trajectory of cancer from the family members’ perspective.
Family members; Cancer; Social support; Social network; Confirmation; Latent content analysis; Walker and Avant concept analysis
Even though the use of perioperative checklists have resulted in significant reduction in postoperative mortality and morbidity, as well as improvements of important information communication, the utilization of checklists seems to vary, and perceived barriers are likely to influence compliance. In this grounded theory study we aimed to explore the challenges and strategies of performing the WHO’s Safe Surgical Checklist as experienced by the nurses appointed as checklist coordinators.
Grounded theory was used in gathering and analyzing data from observations of the checklist used in the operating room, in conjunction with single and focus group interviews. A purposeful sample of 14 nurse-anesthetists and operating room nurses as surgical team members in a tertiary teaching hospital participated in the study.
The nurses’ main concern regarding checklist utilization was identified as “how to obtain professional and social acceptance within the team”. The emergent grounded theory of “adjusting team involvement” consisted of three strategies; distancing, moderating and engaging team involvement. The use of these strategies explains how they resolved their challenges. Each strategy had corresponding conditions and consequences, determining checklist compliance, and how the checklist was used.
Even though nurses seem to have a loyal attitude towards the WHO’s checklist regarding their task work, they adjusted their surgical team involvement according to practical, social and professional conditions in their work environment. This might have resulted in the incomplete use of the checklist and therefore a low compliance rate. Findings also emphasized the importance of: a) management support when implementing WHO’s Safe Surgical Checklist, and b) interprofessional education approach to local adaptation of the checklists use.
Few studies have explored the experiences of low income mothers participating in nurse home visiting programs. Our study explores and describes mothers' experiences participating in the Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP) Program, an intensive home visiting program with demonstrated effectiveness, from the time of program entry before 29 weeks gestation until their infant's first birthday.
A qualitative case study approach was implemented. A purposeful sample of 18 low income, young first time mothers participating in a pilot study of the NFP program in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada partook in one to two face to face in-depth interviews exploring their experiences in the program. All interviews were digitally recorded and transcribed verbatim. Conventional content analysis procedures were used to analyze all interviews. Data collection and initial analysis were implemented concurrently.
The mothers participating in the NFP program were very positive about their experiences in the program. Three overarching themes emerged from the data: 1. Getting into the NFP program; 2. The NFP nurse is an expert, but also like a friend providing support; and 3. Participating in the NFP program is making me a better parent.
Our findings provide vital information to home visiting nurses and to planners of home visiting programs about mothers' perspectives on what is important to them in their relationships with their nurses, how nurses and women are able to develop positive therapeutic relationships, and how nurses respond to mothers' unique life situations while home visiting within the NFP Program. In addition our findings offer insights into why and under what circumstances low income mothers will engage in nurse home visiting and how they expect to benefit from their participation.
Nurse home visiting; Low income; Young mothers; Mother’s experiences
The patient-nurse relationship is a traditional concern of healthcare research. However, patient-nurse interaction is under examined from a social perspective. Current research focuses mostly on specific contexts of care delivery and experience related to medical condition or illness, or to nurses’ speciality. Consequentially, this paper is about the social meanings and understandings at play within situated patient-nurse interaction in the community practice setting in a transforming healthcare service.
Grounded theory methodology was used and the research process was characterised by principles of theoretical sensitivity and constant comparative analysis. The field of study was four health centres in the community. The participants were patients and nurses representative of those attending or working in the health centres and meeting there by scheduled appointment. Data collection methods were observations, informal interviews and semi-structured interviews.
Key properties of ‘Being a good patient, being a good nurse’, ‘Institutional experiences’ and ‘Expectations about healthcare’ were associated with the construction of a category entitled ‘Experience’. Those key properties captured that in an evolving healthcare environment individuals continually re-constructed their reality of being a patient or nurse as they endeavoured to perform appropriately; articulation of past and present healthcare experiences was important in that process. Modus operandi in role as patient was influenced by past experiences in healthcare and by those in non-healthcare institutions in terms of engagement and involvement (or not) in interaction. Patients’ expectations about interaction in healthcare included some uncertainly as they strived to make sense of the changing roles and expertise of nurses and, differentiating between the roles and expertise of nurses and doctors.
The importance of social meanings and understandings in patient-nurse interaction is not fully apparent to nurses, but important in the patient experience. Seeking understanding from a social perspective makes a contribution to enhancing knowledge about patient-nurse interaction with subsequent impact on practice, in particular the development of the patient-nurse relationship. The implications are that the meanings and understandings patients and nurses generate from experiences beyond and within their situated interaction are pivotal to the development of their relationship in the transforming community healthcare environment.
Changes to the workforce and organisation of general practice are occurring rapidly in response to the Australian health care reform agenda, and the changing nature of the medical profession. In particular, the last five years has seen the rapid introduction and expansion of a nursing workforce in Australian general practices. This potentially creates pressures on current infrastructure in general practice.
This study used a mixed methods, ‘rapid appraisal’ approach involving observation, photographs, and interviews.
Nurses utilise space differently to GPs, and this is part of the diversity they bring to the general practice environment. At the same time their roles are partly shaped by the ways space is constructed in general practices.
The fluidity of nursing roles in general practice suggests that nurses require a versatile space in which to maximize their role and contribution to the general practice team.
General practice; Private practice nursing; Physicians office; Spatial analysis; Skill mix
This paper reports a study about the effect of knowledge sources, such as handbooks, an assessment format and a predefined record structure for diagnostic documentation, as well as the influence of knowledge, disposition toward critical thinking and reasoning skills, on the accuracy of nursing diagnoses.
Knowledge sources can support nurses in deriving diagnoses. A nurse’s disposition toward critical thinking and reasoning skills is also thought to influence the accuracy of his or her nursing diagnoses.
A randomised factorial design was used in 2008–2009 to determine the effect of knowledge sources. We used the following instruments to assess the influence of ready knowledge, disposition, and reasoning skills on the accuracy of diagnoses: (1) a knowledge inventory, (2) the California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory, and (3) the Health Science Reasoning Test. Nurses (n = 249) were randomly assigned to one of four factorial groups, and were instructed to derive diagnoses based on an assessment interview with a simulated patient/actor.
The use of a predefined record structure resulted in a significantly higher accuracy of nursing diagnoses. A regression analysis reveals that almost half of the variance in the accuracy of diagnoses is explained by the use of a predefined record structure, a nurse’s age and the reasoning skills of `deduction’ and `analysis’.
Improving nurses’ dispositions toward critical thinking and reasoning skills, and the use of a predefined record structure, improves accuracy of nursing diagnoses.
Clinical practice; Critical reasoning; Knowledge; Nursing diagnoses; RCT
Childhood obesity is a public health epidemic. In Canada 21.5% of children aged 2–5 are overweight, with psychological and physical consequences for the child and economic consequences for society. Parents often do not view their children as overweight. One way to prevent overweight is to adopt a healthy lifestyle (HL). Nurses with direct access to young families could assess overweight and support parents in adopting HL. But what is the best way to support them if they do not view their child as overweight? A better understanding of parents’ representation of children’s overweight might guide the development of solutions tailored to their needs.
This study uses an action research design, a participatory approach mobilizing all stakeholders around a problem to be solved. The general objective is to identify, with nurses working with families, ways to promote HL among parents of preschoolers. Specific objectives are to: 1) describe the prevalence of overweight in preschoolers at vaccination time; 2) describe the representation of overweight and HL, as reported by preschoolers’ parents; 3) explore the views of nurses working with young families regarding possible solutions that could become a clinical tool to promote HL; and 4) try to identify a direction concerning the proposed strategies that could be used by nurses working with this population. First, an epidemiological study will be conducted in vaccination clinics: 288 4–5-year-olds will be weighed and measured. Next, semi-structured interviews will be conducted with 20 parents to describe their representation of HL and their child’s weight. Based on the results from these two steps, by means of a focus group nurses will identify possible strategies to the problem. Finally, focus groups of parents, then nurses and finally experts will give their opinions of these strategies in order to find a direction for these strategies. Descriptive and correlational statistical analyses will be done on the quantitative survey data using SPSS. Qualitative data will be analyzed using Huberman and Miles’ (2003) approach. NVivo will be used for the analysis and data management.
The anticipated benefits of this rigorous approach will be to identify and develop potential intervention strategies in partnership with preschoolers’ parents and produce a clinical tool reflecting the views of parents and nurses working with preschoolers’ parents.
Overweight; Childhood; Preschool; Parental opinion; Health promotion; Action research