The accompaniment needs of the family with a loved one in the critical care unit: research

  • Charnell Quinton
  • Dalena Van Rooyen
  • Johanita Strumpher

Abstract

Nurses have unique opportunities to create environments where patient and family needs can be met. Critical care nurses face the challenge of assisting anxious families to cope with the critical illness of their loved one. There is a great need to humanise the Critical Care Unit and create a warm and caring environment. Caring for a patient's loved ones is challenging, as the family's experience of the patient's admission to the Critical Care Unit is individual and unique. Ensuring the accompaniment of the family with a loved one in the Critical Care Unit provides an excellent standard of professional practice. Concern for the quality of service is a professional responsibility. This research study was divided into three phases. The first phase explores and describes the family experience when a loved one is a patient in the Critical Care Unit. Phase two explores and describes how nurses perceive and interpret the family experience of the Critical Care Unit. These experiences and perspectives were analysed and recurring themes were identified. Finally, in the third phase of the study, guidelines to assist the nurse in the accompaniment of the family in the Critical Care Unit are described.

Verpleegkundiges het 'n unieke geleentheid om 'n omgewing te skep waar daar aan die behoeftes van beide die pasiënte en hul gesinslede voldoen word. Verpleegkundiges wat in intensiewe sorgeenhede werk, het die uitdaging om angstige gesinslede te help om die ernstige siekte van 'n geliefde te verwerk en te aanvaar. Daar is 'n groot behoefte by die publiek om die omgewing in 'n intensiewe eenheid te vermenslik sodat hulle warmte en aanvaarding kan ervaar wanneer hulle 'n siek geliefde besoek. Elke gesinslid ervaar 'n geliefde se ernstige siekte en opname in 'n intensiewe eenheid op 'n unieke en individuele wyse. Dit is die verpleegkundige se professionele taak om te verseker dat hierdie ervaring positief is en dat daar in gesinslede se emosionele behoeftes voorsien word. Die studie was in drie fases verdeel. In fase een is die ervarings van gesinslede van 'n geliefde wat in 'n intensiewe eenheid opgeneem is, bepaal. In fase twee is die perspektiewe van verpleegkundiges wat in intensiewe eenhede werk en wat kontak met gesinslede het, bepaal. Hierdie ervarings en perspektiewe is geanaliseer en herhalende temas is geïdentifiseer. In fase drie van die studie word riglyne gegee van hoe verpleegkundiges te werk kan gaan om gesinslede te ondersteun.

Key words: Accompaniment needs, Family, Loved one, Critical care unit, Qualitative research

(Health SA Gesondheid : interdisciplinary research journal: 2003 8(1): 78-88)
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Articles

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eISSN: 2071-9736
print ISSN: 1025-9848