Impact of the palliative care clinical nurse specialist on patients and relatives: a stakeholder evaluation

Jack, B., Oldham, J. and Williams, A. (2002) Impact of the palliative care clinical nurse specialist on patients and relatives: a stakeholder evaluation. European Journal of Oncology Nursing, 6 (4). pp. 236-242. ISSN 1462-3889 DOI

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Within the last decade, there has been a rapid expansion in the United Kingdom of clinical nurse specialists (CNSs), yet there has been limited evidence of their effectiveness. The clinical area of palliative care has one of the largest numbers of CNSs which has particularly started to escalate in the acute hospital setting. Following the Calman-Hine Report and the more recent NHS Cancer Plan, it is anticipated that the number of CNSs in palliative and cancer care is likely to grow. In light of the current policy emphasis of Clinical Governance and Clinical Effectiveness, there is an urgent need to demonstrate the contribution that CNSs make. This paper presents the qualitative findings of an evaluation study on the impact of the CNS within a palliative care team in a large acute hospital in the North-West of England. A stakeholder evaluation that encompassed tape-recorded semi-structured interviews to explore how the stakeholders saw the impact of the CNS within palliative care was performed. Twenty-seven interviews were conducted with stakeholders across the hospital setting including senior nurses, consultants, junior doctors and nurses representing the different grades. Data were analysed for emerging themes utilizing a case and cross-case analysis. The results indicated that the CNSs within palliative care in an acute hospital are seen to be potentially beneficial for both patients and relatives. This paper will focus on exploring these perceived benefits, which included symptom control, psychological care and being an advocate for patients and relatives. Author Keywords: palliative care, acute hospital, CNSs, stakeholder evaluation

Item Type: Article
Subjects: R Medicine > RT Nursing
Divisions: Nursing and Midwifery
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2010 11:00

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