District nurse role in end-stage COPD: a review

Publisher:
Mark Allen Publishing Ltd.
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
British Journal of Community Nursing, 2010, 15 (9), pp. 428 - 433
Issue Date:
2010-01
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District Nurses (DNs) are core providers of end-stage care in the community but appear to have little contact with patients suffering from non-malignant diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This review found limited literature describing the role of DNs in end-stage COPD care, and the studies that did touch on the subject restricted their discourse to the frequency of interaction. A clear bias of end-of-life services to patients with malignancy was noted, as well as a call for community services to extend care to all end-stage patients regardless of underlying disease. In addition, there was a further call for DNs to apply a more holistic approach to care, as described in the literature. Finally, it was clear that while ongoing community intervention is necessary for end-stage COPD patients, support and training is essential to equip DNs to care for these vulnerable patients.
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