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E1 Palliative nursing—an essential component for the future of palliative care
  1. Philip Larkin
  1. Lausanne University Hospital, Switzerland


From its origins in the work of Dame Cicely Saunders, nursing has been a fundamental part of the international development of palliative care. As nursing has developed as a profession, nurses have become increasingly visible in the leadership of palliative practice, through enhanced clinical roles, including that of the advanced nurse practitioner, developing a body of research and scholarship which establishes the value of nursing to the care of people with chronic life-limiting illness and those at end-of-life.

However, there is a limited evidence base which debates or explains the role and function of the palliative care nurse (as opposed to other nurses who also care for patients with palliative care needs) and which specifically identifies the added value of nursing to palliative care.

This presentation will explore the art and science of palliative care nursing. It will consider what qualities and competencies are essential for a nurse to deliver high quality palliative care and the components of an education framework to establish excellence in clinical practice and research. Using international examples of palliative nursing leadership, the presentation will consider the future of palliative care nursing, what is necessary to ensure its survival and strategies to support future development.

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