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COVID-19, end-of-life care, nursing, nursing education, nursing workforce, palliative care



  1. Parekh de Campos, Amisha PhD, MPH, RN, CHPN
  2. Levoy, Kristen PhD, RN, OCN, CNE
  3. Pandey, Shila MSN, AGPCNP-BC, ACHPN
  4. Wisniewski, Renee MSN, AGPCNP-BC, ACHPN
  5. DiMauro, Pierce MSN, RN
  6. Ferrell, Betty R. PhD, RN, FPCN, FAAN
  7. Rosa, William E. PhD, MBE, AGPCNP-BC, FAANP, FAAN


ABSTRACT: The need for palliative care in our health care system has exponentially increased in the past few years as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the aging population, and the increasing number of people living with serious illnesses. While nurses play a critical role in delivering palliative care, many lack confidence and knowledge, causing practice gaps in the clinical and psychological management of seriously ill patients. The collective burden of the pandemic has demonstrated the importance of palliative care education and training, specifically in communication, symptom management, and continuing education. All nurses, including nursing students, transitioning nurses, and practicing nurses, should be trained to offer generalist (or primary) palliative care, in accordance with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing Essentials: Core Competencies for Professional Nursing Education. Provision of holistic, relationship-based, and integrated palliative care for patients and their families is an ethical obligation for all nurses.