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Keywords

curriculum, end-of-life care, palliative and hospice care, simulation

 

Authors

  1. Josephsen, Jayne MS, RN, CHPN
  2. Martz, Kim MSN, RN

Abstract

As the population ages and the incidence of chronic health conditions increases, the need for quality end-of-life care to be a part of the continuum of health care will also increase. With these issues in mind, a survey was undertaken to discover this university's baccalaureate nursing program end-of-life care curricular content and provide an analysis as to whether the curriculum was meeting identified national end-of-life care guidelines and student practice needs. Faculty and students identified similar areas of curricular deficit and barriers to delivering end-of-life content. However, there were significant differences that identified areas of needed improvement such as a theory practice gap for students and a "silo" effect for faculty. Results indicated that both faculty and students valued end-of-life content in the curriculum. Two simulations were developed and implemented after the survey to meet the areas of curricular deficit identified. There is no doubt that graduate nurses will be faced with providing end-of-life care in a variety of health care settings. Nursing education must provide students with a foundation that will prepare them to provide ethical, holistic, and meaningful care.