Palliative care in undergraduate curricula : Results of a national scoping study

Hegarty, Meg, Currow, David, Parker, Deborah, Turnbull, Bev, Devery, Kim, Canning, Debbie F., Nash, Robyn E., Mitchell, Geoffrey K., Grbich, Carol, & Yates, Patsy (2010) Palliative care in undergraduate curricula : Results of a national scoping study. Focus on Health Professional Education, 12(2), pp. 97-109.

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Background: We wished to explore the ways in which palliative care is included in undergraduate health services curricula in Australia and the barriers to, and opportunities for, such inclusion.

Methods: A scoping study of current Australian undergraduate health care curricula, using an email survey of deans (or equivalent) of health faculties was designed utilising all Australian undergraduate courses that prepare medicine, nursing and allied health professionals for entry to practice. Participants were deans or faculty heads from health and related faculties which offered courses relevant to the project, identified from the Australian Government Department of Education, Science and Training website. Sixty-two deans (or equivalent) from 41 Australian universities were surveyed. A total of 42 completed surveys were returned (68% of deans).

Main outcome measures were total hours, content, teaching and learning strategies and resources for palliative care education in undergraduate curricula; perceived gaps, barriers, and opportunities to support the inclusion of palliative care education in undergraduate curricula.

Results: Forty-five percent of respondents reported the content of current curricula reflected the palliative approach to a large degree. More than half of the respondents reported that their course had palliative care components integrated to a minor degree and a further third to a moderate degree. The number of hours dedicated to palliative care and teaching and learning strategies varied across all respondents, although there was a high degree of commonality in content areas taught.

Conclusion: Current Australian undergraduate courses vary widely in the nature and extent to which they provide education in palliative care.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 43241
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Palliative Care, Palliative Approach, Undergraduate Education, Curriculum, HERN
ISSN: 1442-1100
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > CLINICAL SCIENCES (110300) > Clinical Sciences not elsewhere classified (110399)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY (130200) > Medicine Nursing and Health Curriculum and Pedagogy (130209)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Health Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Nursing
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 Australasian and New Zealand Association for Medical Education (ANZAME)
Deposited On: 13 Jul 2011 13:10
Last Modified: 02 Mar 2015 19:28

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