Carer burden: the impact of caring for dying patients with cancer at home

Jack, B. and O'Brien, M. (2009) Carer burden: the impact of caring for dying patients with cancer at home. 11th Congress of the European Association of Palliatve Care, 7-10 May, Vienna.

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Background: It is estimated that the majority of adults (if diagnosed with a terminal illness) would prefer to die at home. Although UK government initiatives such as the introduction of the End of Life Care Programme promote patients’ choice to die at home despite this there remain a persistent number of patients with cancer who had chosen to die at home being admitted to hospital in the last days and hours of life. Aim: The aim of this study was to explore the factors that influence this outcome. Methodology: A qualitative study using two focus group interviews with community nurses (district nurses and community specialist palliative care nurses) was undertaken across two primary care trusts in the north west of England. Data was analysed using a thematic analysis approach. Results and discussion: All respondents highlighted the ability of carers to cope as a major factor affecting whether patients with cancer were enabled to die at home. Influencing factors such as the ability of the family to cope and the duration of the illness are also reported. This paper discusses the results and explores potential reasons for the findings. Recommendations for the development of a carer assessment tool with appropriate supportive interventions are made.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Subjects: R Medicine > RT Nursing
Divisions: Nursing and Midwifery
Date Deposited: 23 Nov 2010 11:55

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