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Comparison of the Educational Needs of Neonatologists and Neonatal Nurses Regarding Palliative Care in Taiwan

Journal title
The American journal of hospice & palliative care
Publication year
Lee, M. C.; Chen, Y. C.; Chen, C. H.; Lu, F. L.; Hsiao, C. C.; Peng, N. H.

BACKGROUND: Education and training are very critical to development of high-quality neonatal palliative care. However, little investigation has been done into Taiwanese neonatal clinicians’ educational needs regarding neonatal palliative care. PURPOSES: The purposes of this study were to characterize and identify neonatal clinicians’ educational needs regarding neonatal palliative care. METHODS: A cross-sectional descriptive surveyed method via a self administered questionnaire was used in this research. Thirty neonatologists were recruited by a convenience sampling and 30 nurses were recruited by a randomized sampling. RESULTS: Out of sixty neonatal clinicians’ survey, few had received the education in neonatal palliative care. Most reported minimal training in, experience with, and knowledge of neonatal palliative care. For neonatologists, two of twelve most strongly-felt educational needs were "discussing palliative care and ethical decision-making with parents" (70%) and "informing parents the poor progress in neonates" (63.3%). In contrast, neonatal nurses wanted more training regarding pain control (50%). Communication skills, including the discussing poor prognosis, bad news, and code status and talking with neonates about end-of-life care, were the educational need most commonly felt by both neonatologists and nurses. CONCLUSIONS: Survey data from neonatologists and neonatal nurses in Taiwan indicate a need for further training on a range of neonatal palliative care competencies.

Research abstracts