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Indian J Palliat Care. 2019 Jan-Mar;25(1):142-146. doi: 10.4103/IJPC.IJPC_148_18.

Creating a Positive Attitude toward Dying Patients among Nursing Students: Is the Current Curriculum Adequate?

Author information

1
Department of Community Medicine, Pushpagiri Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Thiruvalla, Kerala, India.
2
Unit of Pain and Palliative Care, Pushpagiri Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Thiruvalla, Kerala, India.
3
Pushpagiri College of Nursing, Thiruvalla, Kerala, India.
4
Department of Anesthesiology, Pushpagiri Institute of Medical Sciences and Research Centre, Thiruvalla, Kerala, India.

Abstract

Context:

Nurses play an inevitable role in providing compassionate care and support to dying patients and their families. However, it has been a bone of contention that whether the nursing curriculum is sufficiently set to achieve this goal.

Aims:

The primary objective of this study is to assess the attitude of nursing students attending a private nursing school in Central Travancore region toward the care of dying using the Frommelt Attitude Toward Care of the Dying Scale Form-B (FATCOD-B).

Methodology:

FATCOD-B was introduced among 146 participants and an arbitrary cutoff of 65% of the total score were chosen with those scoring more than that were assumed to have a positive attitude. A principal component analysis was done to identify the key constructs and mean score of the items within these identified constructs were calculated.

Results:

The positive attitude toward dying was shown by 39% of participants. Most of the students' responses were averaging toward the option uncertain. A statistically significant increase in mean score by 3.15 (P = 0.02) was noticed among those who completed palliative care postings. The keys constructs identified included perception toward the end-of-life care, emotional engagement with the dying, and perceptions with respect to professional engagement with subgroup analysis showing an average mean score (standard deviation) of 4.36 (0.144), 2.25 (0.874), and 3.39 (0.85), respectively.

Conclusion:

The revision of the current curriculum incorporating more palliative care postings with specific attention toward handling emotional engagement with the dying may help in developing a positive attitude.

KEYWORDS:

Care of dying; Frommelt Attitude Toward Care of the Dying Scale Form-B; nursing curriculum; palliative care

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