Emotional toil: psychosocial care in rural settings for patients with cancer

Kenny, Amanda, Endacott, Ruth, Botti, Mari and Watts, Rosemary 2007, Emotional toil: psychosocial care in rural settings for patients with cancer, Journal of advanced nursing, vol. 60, no. 6, pp. 663-672.

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Title Emotional toil: psychosocial care in rural settings for patients with cancer
Author(s) Kenny, Amanda
Endacott, Ruth
Botti, Mari
Watts, Rosemary
Journal name Journal of advanced nursing
Volume number 60
Issue number 6
Start page 663
End page 672
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Place of publication Oxford, England
Publication date 2007-11-27
ISSN 0309-2402
1365-2648
Keyword(s) cancer
empirical research report
focus groups
psychosocial nursing
qualitative approaches
rural nursing
support
Summary Aim. This paper is a report of a study to identify experienced rural nurses' perceptions of key issues related to the provision of effective psychosocial care for people with cancer in rural settings.

Background. A cancer diagnosis has a major impact on psychological and emotional wellbeing, and psychosocial support provided by nurses is an integral part of ensuring that people with cancer have positive outcomes. Although, ideally, people with cancer should be managed in specialist settings, significant numbers are cared for in rural areas.

Methods. Using a qualitative descriptive approach, three focus groups were conducted in 2005 with 19 nurses in three hospitals in rural Victoria, Australia.

Findings.
Participants indicated that a key issue in providing psychosocial care to patients with cancer in the rural setting was their own 'emotional toil'. This Global Theme encapsulated three Organizing Themes– task vs. care, dual relationships and supportive networks – reflective of the unique nature of the rural environment. Nurses in rural Australia are multi-skilled generalists and they provide care to patients with cancer without necessarily having specialist knowledge or skill. The fatigue and emotional exhaustion that the nurses described often has a major impact on their own well-being.

Conclusion. In the rural context, it is proposed that clinical supervision may be an important strategy to support clinicians who face emotional exhaustion as part of their cancer nursing role.
Language eng
Field of Research 111004 Clinical Nursing: Tertiary (Rehabilitative)
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2007, Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30007529

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Nursing and Midwifery
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