Palliative nursing competencies required for different levels of palliative care provision: A qualitative analysis of health care professionals' perspectives

Minna Hökkä, Hanna Leena Melender, Juho T. Lehto, Pirjo Kaakinen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    Abstract

    Background: Nurses must possess adequate competencies to provide high-quality palliative care. Earlier statements have described certain competencies that are relevant for palliative care, yet only limited empirical research has focused on the perspective of health care professionals to clarify which competencies are required for different levels of palliative care provision. Objective: The aim was to describe the required palliative nursing competencies of registered nurses aligned to different levels of palliative care provision, from the perspectives of multiprofessional groups. Design: A qualitative study design. Setting/Subjects: A purposive sample of professionals, working in different levels of palliative care across various settings in Finland, was used to gain information about the aim of the study (n = 222). Measurements: Content analysis was applied to describe the competencies of registered nurses. Results: Competencies relevant to basic palliative care were categorized under 17 main categories, which included a total of 75 subcategories. "Competence in managing the most common symptoms"was the main category that contained the largest number of reduced expressions (f = 75). An analysis of specialist palliative care data yielded 10 main categories, including 49 subcategories, with "Competence in maintaining expertise and taking care of own well-being at work"containing the most reduced expressions. Conclusion: The study provided new knowledge; more specifically, competencies related to encounters and maintaining hope were described as palliative care nursing competences. The results can be used to ensure that palliative nursing education focuses on the competences that are necessary in practice.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1516-1524
    Number of pages9
    JournalJOURNAL OF PALLIATIVE MEDICINE
    Volume24
    Issue number10
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2021
    Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Keywords

    • competences
    • education
    • nursing
    • palliative care
    • professional competence
    • qualitative research

    Publication forum classification

    • Publication forum level 1

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General Nursing
    • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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