Paper Presentation: Education Across the Cancer Care Continuum — Creating a Practical End-of-Life Care Mini-Workshop (204-3)

4:25 – 4:45 pm Thursday, September 5

Fortunately, there have been great strides in the progress of treating children diagnosed with cancer during the last 50 years, with ever-increasing survivor outcomes. This is what every practitioner working in the pediatric oncology field strives and hopes for. And yet, despite the remarkable and increasingly sophisticated treatment options, not all children will survive their diagnosis with cancer. In general, nurses have more training, education, and skills with delivering chemotherapy, biotherapy, and other interventions than in providing end-of-life care.

Our Pediatric Oncology-SCT Unit Based Palliative Care Committee noticed that many new grads, young nurses, and even experienced nurses sometimes expressed feelings of being uncomfortable when taking care of dying patients and “not knowing what to do or say.” The purpose of the identified need to support nurses who felt uncomfortable providing end-of-life care was to provide an educational intervention that would offer practical information in a retreat-like setting, increase awareness of skills that could be incorporated into care, and share knowledge from experienced nurses comfortable with end-of-life care, as well as a Parent Panel sharing their insights of their experience with the loss of their child. Our ultimate goal was to help raise our staff’s delivery of exceptional end-of-life care by increasing their comfort level. Thus, we created a mini 4-hour End-of-Life Care Workshop. Even though we have offered a 2-day ELNEC training numerous times over the last several years, it is often difficult to schedule multiple staff to be off 2 extra days in 1 week. Nurses were open to the idea of a 4-hour workshop to enhance comfort and skills with end-of-life care. The format was uniquely interactive and experiential, which proved to be very effective and engaging for those attending. All staff attending had a positive experience with the workshop.

Leslie Griffith, BSN MA CPHON®
CNE Hours: