Date of Award

8-2007

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Nursing

Advisor

Craig, Janet

Committee Member

Meehan , Nancy

Committee Member

Spitler , Hugh

Abstract

ABSTRACT
Despite increased national debate regarding quality of life and quality of care at the end of life, patients in the United States continue to die primarily in hospitals experiencing a myriad of distressing symptoms, leaving caregivers and healthcare professionals wondering if caring for the dying will ever change in this country. There are alternatives available, but it is necessary to assess current conditions for dying patients in order to change the status quo in end of life care. Profiling how patients experience the last few months of life, as well as their terminal hospital stay, is a starting point for just such an assessment.
The following manuscript outlines the purpose of profiling dying populations and provides a framework for compiling profile data for patients who expire in an institutional setting. Utilizing Myra Levine's four conservation principles of nursing care, the following study examines quality indicators identified for end of life care and discusses these domains with regard to specific decline-to-death disease trajectory groups identified in the study.

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Nursing Commons

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