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Something normal in a very, very abnormal environment – Nursing work to honour the life of dying infants and children in neonatal and paediatric intensive care in Australia

Bloomer, Melissa J., Endacott, Ruth, Copnell, Beverley and O’Connor, Margaret 2016, Something normal in a very, very abnormal environment – Nursing work to honour the life of dying infants and children in neonatal and paediatric intensive care in Australia, Intensive and critical care nursing, vol. 33, pp. 5-11, doi: 10.1016/j.iccn.2015.09.001.

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Title Something normal in a very, very abnormal environment – Nursing work to honour the life of dying infants and children in neonatal and paediatric intensive care in Australia
Author(s) Bloomer, Melissa J.ORCID iD for Bloomer, Melissa J. orcid.org/0000-0003-1170-3951
Endacott, Ruth
Copnell, Beverley
O’Connor, Margaret
Journal name Intensive and critical care nursing
Volume number 33
Start page 5
End page 11
Total pages 7
Publisher Elsevier
Place of publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publication date 2016-04
ISSN 0964-3397
Keyword(s) Death
Dying
End of life care
Neonatal intensive care unit (NICU)
Paediatric intensive care unit (PICU)
Paediatric nursing
Rituals
Summary The majority of deaths of children and infants occur in paediatric and neonatal intensive care settings. For nurses, managing an infant/child's deterioration and death can be very challenging. Nurses play a vital role in how the death occurs, how families are supported leading up to and after the infant/child's death. This paper describes the nurses' endeavours to create normality amidst the sadness and grief of the death of a child in paediatric and neonatal ICU. Focus groups and individual interviews with registered nurses from NICU and PICU settings gathered data on how neonatal and paediatric intensive care nurses care for families when a child dies and how they perceived their ability and preparedness to provide family care. Four themes emerged from thematic analysis: (1) respecting the child as a person; (2) creating opportunities for family involvement/connection; (3) collecting mementos; and (4) planning for death. Many of the activities described in this study empowered parents to participate in the care of their child as death approached. Further work is required to ensure these principles are translated into practice.
Language eng
DOI 10.1016/j.iccn.2015.09.001
Field of Research 1110 Nursing
111099 Nursing not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 920211 Palliative Care
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, Elsevier
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30081895

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