The positioning of palliative care in acute care: A multiperspective qualitative study in the context of metastatic melanoma

Fox, Jennifer, Windsor, Carol, Connell, Shirley, & Yates, Patsy (2016) The positioning of palliative care in acute care: A multiperspective qualitative study in the context of metastatic melanoma. Palliative and Supportive Care, 14(03), pp. 259-268.

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Abstract

Objective: The positioning and meaning of palliative care within the healthcare system lacks clarity which adds a level of complexity to the process of transition to palliative care. This study explores the transition to the palliative care process in the acute care context of metastatic melanoma.

Method: A theoretical framework drawing on interpretive and critical traditions informs this research. The pragmatism of symbolic interactionism and the critical theory of Habermas brought a broad orientation to the research. Integration of the theoretical framework and grounded-theory methods facilitated data generation and analysis of 29 interviews with patients, family carers, and healthcare professionals.

Results: The key analytical findings depict a scope of palliative care that was uncertain for users of the system and for those working within the system. Becoming “palliative” is not a defined event; nor is there unanimity around referral to a palliative care service. As such, ambiguity and tension contribute to the difficulties involved in negotiating the transition to palliative care.

Significance of Results: Our findings point to uncertainty around the scopes of practice in the transition to palliative care. The challenge in the transition process lies in achieving greater coherency of care within an increasingly specialized healthcare system. The findings may not only inform those within a metastatic melanoma context but may contribute more broadly to palliative practices within the acute care setting.

Impact and interest:

1 citations in Scopus
1 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 89081
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Palliative, Acute, Specialization, Melanoma, Transition
DOI: 10.1017/S1478951515000917
ISSN: 1478-9523
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > NURSING (111000) > Nursing not elsewhere classified (111099)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Cambridge University Press
Deposited On: 15 Oct 2015 04:17
Last Modified: 28 Jun 2017 09:56

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