Nurses' attitudes toward death and caring for dying patients

Article · November 1999with523 Reads
Source: PubMed
Abstract
To examine possible relationships among the demographic variables of nurses and their attitudes toward death and caring for dying patients. Descriptive. A private hospital and Visiting Nurses Association office in an ethnically diverse metropolitan area in the Midwest. 403 nurses, predominantly female (90%) and Caucasian (70%), with a mean age of 41.8 years. Participants completed the Frommelt Attitude Toward Care of the Dying Scale, the Death Attitude Profile-Revised (DAP-R), and a demographic questionnaire. Attitudes toward death and caring for dying people. DAP-R scores were related to sex, religious affiliation, and current contact with terminally ill patients. Frommelt scale scores (e.g., showing acceptance of death) were positively related to current contact with dying patients, negatively correlated with two DAP-R subscales (Fear of Death and Death Avoidance), and positively correlated with two other DAP-R subscales (Approach Acceptance and Neutral Acceptance). Nurses' attitudes toward death and their current contact with terminally ill patients were predictive of their attitudes toward caring for terminally ill patients. Professionals who are responsible for designing educational programs focused on nurses' attitudes toward caring for terminally ill patients may want to include an assessment of death attitudes and interventions aimed at decreasing negative attitudes and increasing positive attitudes toward death in such programs.
  • ...Death anxiety is considered as a basic fear underlying the development and maintenance of many psychological disorders. Individual attitudes to death and dying vary considerably as a result of many diverse influences (Lehto & Stein, 2009; Rooda, Clements, & Jordan, 1999). Anxiety and apprehension are common emotional reactions to death and dying, together with fear, dread and apprehension about the unknowable (Peters et al., 2013). ...
  • ...[27] Rooda et al. found that dealing with dying patients and gender influenced the attitude of death. [4] The results showed that the fear of death had a direct correlation with the death avoidance. Results of this research demonstrated that people who were more afraid of death were mostly trying to avoid this inevitable phenomenon. ...
  • ...This is made even more challenging by the fact that the most favourable approaches to providing such care are still hampered by the lack of a robust evidence base, as highlighted by recent reviews of the Liverpool Pathway for the Dying (Currow and Abernethy, 2014). Perhaps even more challenging to this situation is that other unchangeable factors such as gender, age, personal background, socioeconomic status, religion, family openness, level of education and recent death experiences of family members and friends may detrimentally affect a staff member's attitude, potentially risking the delivery of optimal care (Rooda et al, 1999). While positive attitudes to dying patients are most preferable, other strategies that may help to ensure care is optimal have been identified. ...
Project
Confirmatory Factor Analysis of Death Attitude Profile Revised and Fear of Personal Death Scale and exploration of death attitudes, their protective and adverse influence on well-being in medical s…" [more]
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