TABLE 9-7 End-of-Life Care Content in 50 Nursing Textbooks

Categories

No. Texts Reviewed

Chapters Devoted to End-of-Life Content/ Total Chapters

Pages Related to End of Life/ Total Pages

AIDS/HIV

1

0/16

20.0/26

Assessment/diagnosis

3

0/80

15.3/1783

Communication

2

0/35

38.0/767

Community/home health

4

0/116

21.3/3108

Critical care

4

2/181

80.8/4116

Emergency

2

1/69

14.5/1006

Ethics/legal issues

5

4/88

143.0/2018

Fundamentals

3

3/140

114.9/4353

Gerontology

5

2/72

84.8/2515

Medical-surgical

2

2/298

146.3/9969

Oncology

2

7/149

107.5/3264

Patient education

3

0/26

8.0/636

Pediatrics

4

2/70

33.5/2599

Pharmacology

3

0/236

22.0/3476

Psychiatry

3

1/127

35.3/2886

Nursing review

4

0/47

17.0/2661

TOTAL

50

24/1750 (1.4%)

901.9/45,683 (2%)

 

SOURCE: Ferrell et al., 1999b.

For each critical content area, a list of specific types of information were prespecified as important for inclusion in a text. For examples, under “Pain,” the topics identified were:

  • definition of pain;

  • assessment of pain—physical;

  • assessment of meaning of pain—scales;

  • pharmacologic management of pain at end of life (classes of analgesics);

  • use of invasive techniques;

  • principles of addiction, tolerance, and dependence;

  • nonpharmacologic management of pain at end of life;

  • physical pain versus suffering;

  • side effects of opioids;

  • barriers to pain management;

  • fear of opioids hastening death or opioids near death;

  • equianalgesia; and

  • recognition of nurses’ own burden in pain management.



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