Introduction Meadow House Hospice provides experiential learning to healthcare professionals who request it. A review was undertaken to understand learners’ objectives and whether these could be met in a short visit.
Methods Visitors were invited to fill in a questionnaire pre and post visit to identify educational objectives. This information was used to conduct a retrospective thematic analysis.
Results From April 2017 to April 2019, the hospice hosted 60 visitors (32 nurses in training, 11 doctors in training, 9 nurses, 4 doctors and 3 allied health professionals) and 206 educational objectives were documented.
Thematic analysis characterised objectives into four main themes. These were:
visitors wanting to be more knowledgeable about the service (43%) in particular roles and service provision (21%), referral processes (19%) and the hospice service in relation to their own role (3%)
visitors wanting to gain specialist knowledge and skills (31%) about assessment and management (22%), medication used in end of life care patients (6%) and communication skills (3%)
visitors wanting to be more knowledgeable about palliative care/specialist palliative care/end of life care (18%)
visitors wanting to experience the specialist palliative care service from a patient or professional perspective by attending multidisciplinary and referral meetings (8%).
When asked how these objectives were achieved during their visit, all visitors cited one, a combination or all of the following activities: shadowing a community nurse or ward doctor; observing multidisciplinary teams and referral meetings where real time patient discussions occurred; and by interacting with hospice professionals.
Conclusion Visitors do not just seek highly specialised knowledge but want to become more knowledgeable about hospices and how they work from their own perspective. Identifying and understanding learning objectives helps meet learning needs of a wide range of healthcare professionals within a short visit to the hospice.
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