International Journal of Palliative Care http://www.hindawi.com The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2014 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Living with Advanced Breast Cancer among Ghanaian Women: Emotional and Psychosocial Experiences Wed, 25 Jun 2014 11:16:53 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijpc/2014/403473/ The purpose of this study was to explore the emotional and psychosocial experiences of Ghanaian women living with advanced breast cancer in the Kumasi metropolis. The study employed a qualitative exploratory descriptive design. Purposive sampling approach was used and data was saturated with 10 participants aged between 32 and 65 years. All interviews were audio-taped and transcribed. Data was analyzed concurrently based on the techniques of content analysis. Anonymity and confidentiality were ensured. Women experienced emotional reactions such as sadness, fear, and anxiety. Pain was severe and led to suicidal ideations. Women experienced lost hopes regarding their marriage, parenting, and work. They received support from their families, spouses, colleagues, health professionals, and spiritual leaders. Women coped by accepting the disease and surrendering to God and having the will to live. Five major themes described were emotional reactions, pain, lost hope, support, and coping. It was recommended that health care providers involved in breast cancer management should be trained to enhance effective and holistic care of women and their families. Also, patients with advanced disease should be given effective pain management and a multidisciplinary palliative care team should be instituted to care for the women. Adwoa Bemah Bonsu, Lydia Aziato, and Joe Nat A. Clegg-Lamptey Copyright © 2014 Adwoa Bemah Bonsu et al. All rights reserved. Developing Strategies to Improve Advance Care Planning in Long Term Care Homes: Giving Voice to Residents and Their Family Members Mon, 14 Apr 2014 11:38:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijpc/2014/358457/ Long term care (LTC) homes, also known as residential care homes, commonly care for residents until death, making palliative care and advance care planning (ACP) important elements of care. However, limited research exists on ACP in LTC. In particular, research giving voice to family members and substitute decision makers is lacking. The objective of this research was to understand experiences, perspectives, and preferences to guide quality improvement of ACP in LTC. This qualitative descriptive study conducted 34 individual semistructured interviews in two LTC homes, located in Canada. The participants were 31 family members and three staff, consisting of a front line care worker, a registered nurse, and a nurse practitioner. All participants perceived ACP conversations as valuable to provide “resident-centred care”; however, none of the participants had a good understanding of ACP, limiting its effectiveness. Strategies generated through the research to improve ACP were as follows: educating families and staff on ACP and end-of-life care options; better preparing staff for ACP conversations; providing staff skills training and guidelines; and LTC staff initiating systematic, proactive conversations using careful timing. These strategies can guide quality improvement of palliative care and development of ACP tools and resources specific to the LTC home sector. Kimberly Ramsbottom and Mary Lou Kelley Copyright © 2014 Kimberly Ramsbottom and Mary Lou Kelley. All rights reserved. Why Did an Out-of-Hospital Shift of Death and Dying Occur in Canada after 1994? Sun, 02 Feb 2014 11:24:14 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijpc/2014/157536/ Canadian population mortality data reveal a significantly reduced proportion of deaths occurring in hospitals after 1994. Hospital deaths peaked at 80.5% in 1994, after a longstanding hospitalization-of-death trend in Canada. A decline in hospital-based death and dying has also occurred in some other countries. As the place of death can have multiple significant direct and indirect impacts on dying individuals, their families, and health services utilization and costs, it is important to understand factors for an out-of-hospital shift. An integrative review of Canadian print literature from 1995 was undertaken to identify these factors, with three themes emerging: (1) changes in health care and health system reforms after 1994 reduced both the availability and desirability of hospital-based care, (2) sociodemographic developments including aging of the population, increased multiculturalism, and diversity in accepted end-of-life care practices shifted place preferences, and (3) advances in palliative and end-of-life care, including a palliative care expansion out of hospital, supported nonhospital death, and dying processes. The period following 1994 was thus a time of major transformation during which the place of death and dying underwent important changes that supported and promoted a transition from hospital-based end-of-life care. Donna M. Wilson, Jessica A. Hewitt, Roger E. Thomas, and Boris Woytowich Copyright © 2014 Donna M. Wilson et al. All rights reserved. The Opinion of General Practitioners, Medical Students, and Other Medical Specialists on Palliative Care in Bulgaria Thu, 30 Jan 2014 10:02:42 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijpc/2014/631798/ In Bulgaria, the patient is entitled to palliative care in case of incurable disease with an unfavourable prognosis. Palliative care is provided by the family doctor/GP and institutions. Literature on palliative care providing is scarce. The objective of the study was to investigate the opinion of general practitioners, medical students, and other medical specialists working in institutions on palliative care. Method. We have developed a structured questionnaire. Descriptive statistics have been calculated for all items. Differences between groups have been compared using -criterion. Level of significance was . Data has been analyzed using SPSS v. 16. Results. A total of 518 respondents completed the survey. Lack of appropriate organisation and financing has been pointed out by all participants. The GP’s role in palliative care providing has been described as a contradictory one. The criteria on the basis of which the patients are eligible for palliative care have been arranged in the same way by all respondents, but GPs chose the longest temporal indicator. Quality assessment has not been applied. 2/3 of respondents demanded palliative care training. Conclusion. On the whole, the investigated groups differed to some extent in their opinion on palliative care both on conceptual and practical levels. G. Foreva, R. Asenova, and M. Semerdjieva Copyright © 2014 G. Foreva et al. All rights reserved. Incidence and Cause of Delirium in Hospitalized Patients between the Ages of 18 and 56: A Retrospective Chart Review Tue, 28 Jan 2014 08:44:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijpc/2014/214265/ Background. Delirium is a common and devastating condition which has been well characterized in elderly cancer patients, but little is known about delirium in cancer patients under the age of 65. Aim. A pilot study to explore the incidence and potential causes of delirium in hospitalized advanced cancer patients at the age of 18–56 years. Design. A retrospective chart review using validated instruments was used to examine the charts of hematology-oncology admissions in a large academic institution. Data was collected as to the likelihood of delirium and potential precipitants. Results. Delirium incidence was 29% among advanced cancer patients. The associated precipitants of delirium were multifactorial, the most common being medications and infection. Delirium was more common in patients admitted for either acute symptom management or the presence of a lung malignancy. Patients with delirium demonstrated significantly increased total hospital cost and a borderline significant result for increased mortality compared to those without delirium. Conclusions. Delirium is common in hospitalized advanced cancer patients (age 18–56 years) and the cause is typically multifactorial. Delirium results in a more complicated hospital course and likely increased mortality. Further research is needed to define strategies to prevent and treat this common and distressing condition. Michelle T. Weckmann, Camden Bay, Nesrin Abu Ata, and R. Sean Morrison Copyright © 2014 Michelle T. Weckmann et al. All rights reserved. Ethical, Socioeconomic, and Cultural Considerations in Gynecologic Cancer Care in Developing Countries Sun, 19 Jan 2014 07:45:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijpc/2014/141627/ Gynaecologic cancers contribute significantly to the cancer burden in developing countries, resulting in higher mortality and morbidity rates among women in these nations. This situation is further compounded by the occurrence of wars, famine, poverty and natural disasters, and infectious diseases like hepatitis B and HIV/AIDS. In addition, merge resources and manpower lack in these countries further compound this very delicate situation. Often times, socioeconomic, cultural, and ethical factors such as truth-telling, choice of place of care, place of death, treatment choices, medication use, and terminal sedation can interfere in patient management. Availability and use of oral morphine for pain relief, spiritual care and availability of palliative care services, the individuals’ autonomy, and family and community participation in care, end of life issues, and preservation of fertility are also big issues that determine the course of care. This review discusses these pertinent factors, discusses how they affect cancer care in women, and proffers ideas for healthcare workers and policy makers on implementation of sustainable models for cancer care in developing countries. Addressing socioeconomic, cultural, and ethical issues affecting gynaecologic cancer care will aid in ensuring development of viable models of cancer care in resource-limited countries. Uzochukwu Uzoma Aniebue and Tonia Chinyelu Onyeka Copyright © 2014 Uzochukwu Uzoma Aniebue and Tonia Chinyelu Onyeka. All rights reserved. An Integrated Literature Review of Death Education in Pre-Registration Nursing Curricula: Key Themes Thu, 02 Jan 2014 13:08:44 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ijpc/2014/564619/ Recent policy has raised the profile of end-of-life care internationally, with the aim of increasing access to quality care for everyone experiencing life-limiting illness. This reflects an international shift in the provision of palliative care to encompass chronic conditions other than cancer. Nurses have an important role in delivering this care and need to be equipped with particular knowledge and skills. However, pre-registration nursing curricula have traditionally had a limited emphasis on death and dying and nurses report feeling unprepared to care for dying patients. This has led to claims that death education in pre-registration curricula is inadequate. This integrated review explores the published literature that reports on death education within pre-registration nurse education. Presenting an international overview, the aim of the review is to contribute to knowledge about the nature and extent of death education in pre-registration curricula. In the context of this paper, death education encompasses both palliative and end-of-life care. Electronic searches of major bibliographic databases found inconsistencies across educational provision with variations in quantity, content, and approach. Despite an increasing amount of death education in pre-registration curricula, there remains a deficit in key areas such as knowledge, skills, organisation of care, and teamwork. Joyce Cavaye and Jacqueline H. Watts Copyright © 2014 Joyce Cavaye and Jacqueline H. Watts. All rights reserved.