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Title: Nurses' perceptions of family participation in the care of the acute older adult patient
Authors: Vella, Charmaine
Keywords: Older people -- Hospital care -- Malta
Nurses -- Attitudes
Hospital patients -- Family relationships
Issue Date: 2003
Citation: Vella, C. (2003). Nurses' perceptions of family participation in the care of the acute older adult patient (Bachelor’s dissertation).
Abstract: A large number of hospital admissions consists of older adults and is continually increasing with the changing demography worldwide (Li et al 2001). With hospital stays getting shorter, elderly people are being discharged in the community in more frail health. Proper family participation during hospitalisation may improve the transition to family caregiving in the home and increase patient wellbeing (Moser et al, 1993). This study highlights nurses' perceptions on family participation in the care of the older adult patient. Data was collected by a questionnaire using a variety of open and close-ended questions. The sample comprised the total accessible population of nurses (N=23) in two medical wards allocated to the researcher by the Institute of Health Care. A response rate of 91 % was obtained. Definitions of family participation were not comprehensive enough. This may be due to the lack of a proper definition of the concept under study. Family members were often allowed to carry basic care tasks but more technical aspects remained at the preserve of nurses. Nurses may lack trust in family members or they do not feel knowledgeable enough on family care. Participants recognised the importance of family participation in discharge planning and decision-making. However, some nurses carried reservations about family members' knowledge and ability to participate in decision-making. Participants were aware that much more can be done from their side to enhance family participation. Nurses under study acknowledged that they should dedicate time to relatives. But heavy workloads, staff shortage, relatives' unavailability and unwillingness to participate limited the possibility of proper family participation. A number of recommendations were identified.
Description: B.SC.(HONS)NURSING
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacHScNur - 2003

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