Patient- and family-centred care practices of emergency nurses in emergency departments in the Durban area, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

  • J P B Almaze
  • J de Beer


Background. Admission of a loved one to an emergency/critical care unit can result in role conflict, high levels of stress, interruption of normal routines and potential changes in relationships among family members (FMs). Other potential stressors that FMs can be exposed to are deterioration in the condition of the patient, an uncertain outcome for the patient, pain and suffering experienced by the patient, the unfamiliar environment, and the large amount of high-tech equipment. An approach to support FMs during this crisis period is patient- and family-centred care (PFCC).
Objectives. To describe PFCC practices of emergency nurses in emergency departments (EDs) in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Province, South Africa.
Methods. A descriptive survey was done among 44 emergency nurses (enrolled and registered nurses) from four EDs in the Durban area of KZN. The Self-Assessment Inventory Tool was used and adapted for a resource-constrained setting.
Results. The majority of emergency nurses (84%) acknowledged the importance of family participation in patient care, 87% reported that FMs were provided with information in a timely manner, and 77% indicated that they had the necessary skills to provide care to FMs.
Conclusions. The study showed that the majority of emergency nurses in EDs in the Durban area of KZN provided PFCC. The findings demonstrate that although PFCC is a challenge, nurses in EDs acknowledge the importance of this model of care.


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2078-676X
print ISSN: 1562-8264