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Conversations about death and dying with older people: an ethnographic study in nursing homes
Malmö University.
Lund University.
Linköping University.
Lund University.
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2018 (English)In: Healthcare (Basel, Switzerland), ISSN 2227-9032, Vol. 6, no 2Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Nursing homes are often places where older persons “come to die.” Despite this, death and dying are seldom articulated or talked about. The aim of this study was to explore assistant nurses’ experiences of conversations about death and dying with nursing home residents. This study is part of an implementation project through a knowledge-based educational intervention based on palliative care principles. An ethnographic study design was applied in seven nursing homes, where eight assistant nurses were interviewed and followed in their daily assignments through participant observations. The assistant nurses stated that they had the knowledge and tools to conduct such conversations, even though they lacked the time and felt that emotional strain could be a hinder for conversations about death and dying. The assistant nurses used the strategies of distracting, comforting, and disregarding either when they perceived that residents’ reflections on death and dying were part of their illness and disease or when there was a lack of alignment between the residents’ contemplations and the concept of dying well. They indicated that ambivalence and ambiguity toward conversations about death and dying should be taken into consideration in future implementations of knowledge-based palliative care that take place in nursing homes after this project is finalized.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 6, no 2
Keywords [en]
Aged, auxiliary nurse, end-of-life, ethnographic approach, existential communication, frailty, life-limiting disease, older, palliative care, residential care
National Category
Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hkr:diva-19073DOI: 10.3390/healthcare6020063PubMedID: 29899220OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hkr-19073DiVA, id: diva2:1288861
Available from: 2019-02-14 Created: 2019-02-14 Last updated: 2019-02-15Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf