ICU nurses' experiences and perspectives of caring for obstetric patients in intensive care: A qualitative study

Kynoch, Kate, Paxton, Jody, & Chang, Anne M. (2011) ICU nurses' experiences and perspectives of caring for obstetric patients in intensive care: A qualitative study. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 20(11-12), pp. 1768-1775.

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Aims and objectives.  The aim of this study was to gain an understanding of the experiences and perspectives of intensive care nurses caring for critically ill obstetric patients.

Background.  Current literature suggests critically ill obstetric patients need specialised, technically appropriate care to meet their specific needs with which many intensive care nurses are unfamiliar. Furthermore, there is little research and evidence to guide the care of this distinct patient group.

Design.  This study used a descriptive qualitative design.

Methods.  Two focus groups were used to collect data from 10 Australian intensive care units nurses in May 2007. Open-ended questions were used to guide the discussion. Latent content analysis was used to analyse the data set. Each interview lasted no longer than 60 minutes and was recorded using audio tape. The full interviews were transcribed prior to in-depth analysis to identify major themes.

Results.  The themes identified from the focus group interviews were competence with knowledge and skills for managing obstetric patients in the intensive care unit, confidence in caring for obstetric patients admitted to the intensive care unit and acceptance of an expanded scope of practice perceived to include fundamental midwifery knowledge and skills.

Conclusion.  The expressed lack of confidence and competence in meeting the obstetric and support needs of critically ill obstetric women indicates a clear need for greater assistance and education of intensive care nurses. This in turn may encourage critical care nurses to accept an expanded role of clinical practice in caring for critically ill obstetric patients.

Relevance to clinical practice.  Recognition of the issues for nurses in successfully caring for obstetric patients admitted to an adult intensive care setting provides direction for designing education packages, ensuring specific carepaths and guidelines are in place and that support from a multidisciplinary team is available including midwifery staff.

Impact and interest:

6 citations in Scopus
2 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 45424
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: critical care, focus groups, nurses, nursing, obstetric, qualitative approaches
DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2702.2010.03517.x
ISSN: 1365-2702
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > NURSING (111000)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Deposited On: 24 Aug 2011 22:19
Last Modified: 14 Jul 2017 06:01

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