Sunday, November 4, 2007: 8:15 AM-9:30 AM
Palliative Care Nursing Research with Older Adults
Learning Objective #1: Enhance understanding of palliative care needs among older adults.
Learning Objective #2: Discuss methods in which care may be improved among older adults at the end of life.
In the United States, a marked difference continues between the way people want to die and the way they actually do. The goal of palliative care is to allow people to die in a manner that they would consider a “good death.” Palliative care has recently undergone a great deal of research, and the role of the nurse at the end of life is becoming better articulated. This symposium focuses on the needs of older adults at the end of life, and seeks to enhance the quality of life of older adults residing at home and in long term care facilities. Three separate, but related research projects surrounding palliative care will be presented in order to facilitate knowledge sharing and further knowledge development among nurses regarding palliative care. The first study explores the spiritual experience of Puerto Rican women in coping with chronic disease. Using a qualitative design and phenomenological methods 12 Puerto Rican women aged 55 or older, diagnosed with a chronic illness for at least five years and reporting at least one activity limitation were interviewed. In the second study, a retrospective 3 month chart review was conducted on 64 patients at two long term care agencies. The purpose of the study was to identify the frequency of documented symptoms and pharmacological and non-pharmacological interventions conducted for the symptom(s) as well as patient response to the intervention. This data was gathered at baseline and post an educational intervention on symptom management for nurses. In the final study, 60 older nursing residents in two facilities were interviewed using a Spiritual Care Rating Scale in order to better understand resident’s spirituality and perception of spiritual care. Correlation and descriptive statistics provide the framework for discussing spiritual needs among this cohort of older adult nursing home residents.
Symposium Organizer:Meredith Wallace, PhD, APRN
Symposium Presenters:Sheila Grossman, PhD, APRN-BC, FNP
Jean W. Lange, RN, PhD
Meredith Wallace, PhD, APRN
 Exploration and Assessment of Interventions for Symptom Mangement for Older End of Life Patients
Sheila Grossman, PhD, APRN-BC, FNP
 Spirituality in Coping with Chronic Disease among Puerto Rican Women
Jean W. Lange, RN, PhD
 The Spirituality of Older Adult Nursing Home Residents at the End of LIfe
Meredith Wallace, PhD, APRN