Background Barriers exist which often compromise the care a patient and their relative/carer receive at the end of life.1 One barrier that has been identified is the preparation student nurses receive in order to adequately care for this group of patients.2 Subsequently the DH suggested that “end of life care needs embedding in training curriculums at all levels and for all staff groups”.1 (pg 14)
The general population may not experience or deal with death until they reach middle age.3 A number of student nurses therefore may have limited experience in dealing with the emotional death and grief.
The nursing programme is competence based therefore student nurses may view their own distress negatively. The impact may be inhibit sharing and seeking support.
EOL education may be challenging as it can provoke anxiety. Providing an environment that reassures and feels safe with a philosophy of shared compassion for all involved is an essential element within end of life educational interventions.
Aims Introduce an educational initiative that provides a culture for change
Improve end of life care experiences for all involved
Develop a pathway of support which will allow students to process their experiences and achieve the necessary skills.
Framework Embed initiative within each stage of the BSc (Hons) nursing award.
▸ Cooperative learning
▸ Safe environment
▸ Peer support promoting a sense of family4
The effectiveness will be measured using an adapted version of the Evaluation Toolkit
Conclusions High quality end of life care is essential and pre-registration training has been acknowledged as an area where shortcomings may be addressed.
Student nurses require supportive educational interventions surrounding end of life care that facilitate changes in knowledge, behaviour and attitudes in preparation for their transition into the nursing profession.
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