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Adaptation of a Palliative Care Approach in the Context of Intensive Care: A Systematic Literature Review

Authors Hanan Hamdan Alshehri
Sepideh Olausson
Axel Wolf
Joakim Öhlen
Published in 16th Word Congress of the European Association for Palliative Care (EAPC). Berlin, May 23-25, Abstract P02-385
Publication year 2019
Published at University of Gothenburg Centre for person-centred care (GPCC)
Institute of Health and Care Sciences
Language en
Subject categories Palliative medicine, Nursing


Background: Palliative care is assumed to be an integral part of care in Intensive Care Units (ICU), yet, research still indicates lack knowledge about how to adapt, integrate and adopt palliative care in curative focused contexts such as in intensive care. Aim: To identify factors influencing the integration of a palliative care approach in the context of ICU. Method: A systematic review based on quantitative and qualitative stud- ies using a thematic synthesis of the articles was performed. The follow- ing search term were used: Implementation, palliative care and ICU. In total 1843 articles were screened, and 25 articles were eligible for this review. Result: The findings show that the influencing factors for integrating a palliative care approach are multifaceted. Themes were identified; facilitators and barriers for implementation and adaptation on organi- zational level (facilitating policies and environmental support, care pathways, prognostication, multidisciplinary team, training and edu- cation) and interpersonal level (communication conflict, emotional and spiritual support, person-centred care and patient and family involvement). Conclusion: To adopt a palliative care approach into the ICU setting, the integration process requires adaption of organizational support and per- sonal beliefs and attitudes within the entire multi-professional team including the manager as well as patient and family.

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