A grounded theory study : exploring health care professionals decision making when managing end stage heart failure care

Higginbotham, K ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0795-7473, Jones, I ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3081-0069 and Johnson, M ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6570-0145 2021, 'A grounded theory study : exploring health care professionals decision making when managing end stage heart failure care' , Journal of Advanced Nursing, 77 (7) , pp. 3142-3155.

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Aim: To explore how healthcare professionals in an acute medical setting make decisions when managing the care of patients diagnosed with end stage heart failure, and how these decisions impact directly on the patient’s end of life experience. Design: A constructivist grounded theory approach was adopted. Method: A purposive sample was used to recruit participants that included 16 registered nurses, 15 doctors and 16 patients. Data were collected using semi structured interviews and focus groups over a 12-month period of fieldwork concluding in 2017. The interviews were recorded and transcribed and data analysed using constant comparison and QSR NVivo. Findings: Four theoretical categories emerged from the data to explain how healthcare professionals and patients negotiated the process of decision making when considering end of life care. These were: signposting symptoms, organising care, being informed and recognising dying. The themes revolved around a core category ‘a vicious cycle of heart failure care’. Conclusion: Healthcare professionals need to engage in informed decision making with patients to break this ‘vicious cycle of care’ by identifying key stages in the terminal phase of heart failure and correctly signposting the patient to the most suitable healthcare care professional for intervention. Impact: This study provides a theoretical framework to explain a ‘vicious cycle of care’ for patients diagnosed with end stage heart failure. This theory grounded in data demonstrates the need for both acute and primary care to design an integrative end of life care pathway for heart failure patients which addresses the need for early shared decision making between the healthcare professional, family and the patient when it comes to end of life conversations. Keywords: End of life care, end stage heart failure, grounded theory, heart failure, health care professional, nurse, nursing care, palliative care, recognising dying, vicious cycle

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Advanced Nursing
Publisher: Wiley
ISSN: 0309-2402
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Professor Martin Johnson
Date Deposited: 26 May 2021 12:39
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 07:12
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/60408

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