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Nurs Crit Care. 2013 Mar-Apr;18(2):93-102. doi: 10.1111/j.1478-5153.2012.00543.x.

Health consumers' experiences in Australian critical care units: postgraduate nurse education implications.

Author information

  • 1Princess Margaret Hospital for Children, Child & Adolescent Health Services, Perth, WA, Australia. f.gill@curtin.edu.au

Abstract

AIM:

To explore critical care patients and families experiences and seek their input into nurses' postgraduate educational preparation and practice.

BACKGROUND:

There is an inconsistency in the expected standard of practice to 'qualify' Australian critical care nurses. There has also been a lack of health consumer input in the development of postgraduate course curriculum and content.

METHOD:

Following institutional ethics committee approval, purposive sampling was used to select participants for focus groups and individual interviews who had experienced intensive care or coronary care.

FINDINGS:

Seventeen participants provided data which created two main thematic categories; the role of the critical care nurse and; minimum practice standards for postgraduate critical care course graduates. Both physical patient care and socio-emotional support of patients and family were identified as important for the critical care nurse role. The level of socio-emotional support provided by nurses was reported to be inconsistent. Components of socio-emotional support included communication, people skills, facilitating family presence and advocacy. These components were reflected in participants' concepts of minimum practice standards for postgraduate critical care course graduates; talking and listening skills, relating to and dealing with stressed people, individualizing care and patient and family advocacy.

CONCLUSION:

Health consumers' views emphasize that socio-emotional skills and behaviours need to be explicitly described in postgraduate critical care nursing course curricula and instruments developed to consistently assess these core competencies.

© 2013 The Authors. Nursing in Critical Care © 2013 British Association of Critical Care Nurses.

PMID:
23419185
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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