Communicating with Patients and their Families about Palliative and End of Life: Comfort and Educational Needs of Staff RNs
Cheryl Moir, RN/CHPN [Care Coordinator], Home Care/Hospice, St. Luke’s Health System, 190 E. Bannock St., Boise, ID 83712
Renee Roberts, BSN RN [Clinical Nurse], Bone Marrow Transplant, University of Colorado Hospital, 12505 E. 16th St, Aurora, CO 80045
Kim Martz, PhD RN [Assistant Professor], Boise State University, 1910 University Drive, Boise, ID 83725
Judith Perry, MSN, ACHPN [Nurse Practitioner—Board Certified], and Home Care/Hospice, St. Luke’s Health System, 190 E. Bannock St., Boise, ID 83712
Laura J. Tivis, PhD, CCRP [Nursing Research Director] St. Luke’s Health System, 190 E. Bannock St., Boise, ID 83712
Introduction—Effectively discussing palliative care with patients and families requires knowledge and skill. The purpose of this study was to determine perceived needs of inpatient
nurses for communicating with patients and families about palliative and end of life care.
Method—A non-experimental design was utilized. Sixty inpatient nurses completed the End of Life Professional Caregiver survey.
Results—Effects for years of experience and unit were found [F(9,131.57)=2.22, p=0.0246; Wilk’s Λ=0.709 and F(6,110)=2.49, p=0.0269]. For all three domains (Patient and Family-
Centered Communication, Cultural and Ethical Values, and Effective Care Delivery) years of
nursing experience was positively associated with comfort in communicating about end of life
care. Oncology nurses reported were most comfortable with regard to patient and family-centered
Discussion—The success and sustainability of this service is dependent on education for healthcare providers. Studies are needed to determine best ways to meet this educational
Palliative Care; End of Life Care; End of Life Professional Caregiver survey; Patient-Centered Communication
Direct correspondence to: Cheryl Moir RN/CHPN, St. Luke’s Health System, Hospice and Palliative Care, 190 E. Bannock St., Boise, ID 83712; firstname.lastname@example.org; Telephone: (208) 850-3498; FAX: (208) 381-2725.
Conflicts of Interest The authors have no conflicts of interest to report.
HHS Public Access Author manuscript Int J Palliat Nurs. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2016 March 01.
Published in final edited form as: Int J Palliat Nurs. 2015 March ; 21(3): 109–112.