Dignity conserving care at end-of-life: a narrative review

Östlund, U., Brown, H. and Johnston, B. (2012) Dignity conserving care at end-of-life: a narrative review. European Journal of Oncology Nursing, 16(4), pp. 353-367. (doi:10.1016/j.ejon.2011.07.010) (PMID:21917517)

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Purpose of the research: This narrative literature review uses systematic principles to define evidence regarding dignity conserving care at end-of-life from published research on dignity or distress in end-of-life care. Methods: The Chochinov model of dignity was used as a pre-defined framework. Articles were reviewed using thematic analysis to produce a synthesis of findings. A total of 39 articles (26 qualitative and 13 quantitative) fulfilled the inclusion criteria and were found to give suggestions on care actions. Key results: Several care actions were identified related to all themes contained within the Dignity Model, except aftermath concerns. Examples include: controlling symptoms; listening to the patient and taking them seriously; providing advice concerning how to cope on a daily basis; treating patients as equals and with respect, and; encouraging the family members’ presence. Conclusions: Evidence for supporting palliative care services has previously been found to be weak in determining solutions to meet individual’s important needs. Drawing together primary research, as in this study, is therefore of importance. The suggested care actions will be used to develop a dignity care pathway for end-of-life care, which is currently being evaluated by the authors. The intention is to provide more valid evidence for the effectiveness of the care actions suggested.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This work was supported as a post doctoral fellowship by the Centre for Health Care Science at Karolinska Institutet, Sweden and the Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Johnston, Professor Bridget
Authors: Östlund, U., Brown, H., and Johnston, B.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing > Nursing and Health Care
Journal Name:European Journal of Oncology Nursing
Published Online:13 September 2011

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