Date of Award
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)
Palliative care (PC) is an interdisciplinary approach that specifically focuses on improving quality of life for people living with chronic, life-limiting illnesses (Kelley & Morrison, 2015). Ideally, PC should be initiated at the time of diagnosis. Research suggest that PC referrals are often delayed until there is a clearly terminal event, leading to unnecessary suffering from preventable symptoms and poor quality of life (Wilson, Avalos, & Dowling, 2016). The aim of this MSN thesis was to determine what barriers exist in the primary care setting to identifying and/or referring patients to PC programs. A descriptive study was performed utilizing an electronic survey questionnaire that was distributed to Registered Nurses (RNs) working in primary care practices. Barriers identified were physician reluctance to communicate a terminal prognosis and physician discomfort in discussing end of life planning with their patients.
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Rutherford, Angela F., "Primary Care Nursing Barriers to Identifying and Referring Patients to Palliative Care" (2017). Nursing Theses and Capstone Projects. 284.