Identifying and assessing the needs of carers of patients with palliative care needs: An exploratory study

Publication Type:
Journal Article
International Journal of Palliative Nursing, 2018, 24 (10), pp. 503 - 509
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© 2018 MA Healthcare Ltd. Background: Carers of patients with palliative care needs require careful assessment and support to undertake their role effectively. The carer component of palliative care is embedded in complex situations that necessarily focus on the patient. Aims: To explore experiences of specialist palliative care nurses in identifying, assessing and planning care to support those looking after patients with palliative care needs. Results: Findings identified gaps in identifying carers and their role, and in assessing carers' needs. Conclusions: This study confirmed the complexity in assessing carers' needs within the palliative care context, that practice gaps exist and positive outcomes result when routine processes were adopted. Future research should explore how to systematically make improvements in supporting carers in all palliative care contexts, including specialist and non-specialist settings.
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