End of Life Holistic Care for Cancer Patients: A Qualitative Study
Community Nursing Research Center, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran.
Introduction: Cancer is one of the most important causes of death in the world. Many cancer patients are hospitalised at the end of their life, requiring end-of-life care.
Aim: To elucidate the Iranian oncology nursesâ€™ experience of caring for dying cancer patients.
Materials and Methods: This qualitative study was conducted with a conventional content analysis method. Data was collected by semi-structured interviews, which were conducted with16 purposefully selected nurses who were providing end of life care for cancer patients in the oncology wards. Qualitative thematic analysis was used to analyse the data.
Results: Three themes emerged from the text including: patient-centered care, family-centered care, and personal and professional characteristics of the nurses. These three themes defined a more general class or category entitled; â€śholistic careâ€ť.
Conclusion: The results of the study revealed that end-of-life patients require holistic care. Therapeutic relationships underlie professional holistic care and are essential for the end of life care. Proper education and professionally led supervision should be included in the curriculum of nursing education in Iran.