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Neonatal Netw. 2006 Nov-Dec;25(6):387-92.

Palliative care delivery in the NICU: what barriers do neonatal nurses face?

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Queensland University of Technology, School of Nursing, Kelvin Grove, Brisbane, Australia.


Despite the existence of a universal protocol in palliative care for dying babies and their families, provision of this type of care remains ad hoc in contemporary neonatal settings. Influential bodies such as the American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization support palliative care to this patient population, so why are such measures not universally adopted? Are there barriers that prevent neonatal nurses from delivering this type of care? A search of the literature reveals that such barriers may be significant and that they have the potential to prevent dying babies from receiving the care they deserve. The goal of this literature review is to identify these barriers to providing palliative care in neonatal nursing. Results of the research have been used to determine item content for a survey to conceptualize and address these barriers.

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