Caring for Patients and Families at the End of Life

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The article is precisely started with an abstract that clearly briefs the reader on what to expect in according to the entire research. The main idea that the research aims at revealing involves how care givers in any institution expresses there care for patients and families at the end of life and how nurses feel during the withdrawal of life sustaining treatment (Vanderspank-Wright, Fothergill-Bourbannis, Braitman & Gagnon, (2011). This first aspect of revealing what the article is all about gives all readers a limelight of what to expect while trying to understand the article. Also, it is clear that the life of a person matters a lot to all health care givers and hence they dedicate their time and resources to ensure all patients get the best as soon as possible. On the other hand, there are some cases where nurses or any other care givers find themselves being subjected in a situation that requires them to make a decision of withdrawing a patient from life-sustaining treatment (Gamble, 2012). Therefore, by revealing all the sides of the research it helps the reader to clearly connect the two incidences so as to come to a good ending of making a conclusion.

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However, the research question itself is designed to meet all the requirement of a qualitative study. For instance, it has no hypothesis as it is referred to be one of the characteristic of a quantitative study. Instead, the authors adapted to the assessment of every term they used to ensure it yields the best according to the healthcare issue at hand. The authors were aware of all that could be incorporated in the article to make it clear and appealing. Therefore, organizing it was not a hard task.

Moreover, it is clear that the study design is consistent with its qualitative approach. For instance, the authors try to reveal each and every problem in the study with opinions so as to convince the reader and make him/her understand the reason of carrying out some practices. For instance, when nurses take the initiative of educating patients and even the families concerned on the need to have a withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment is one way of making the reader understand the reasons as to why some things need to be done. Meanwhile, it could not be very easy for the nurses too but they undergo some trying before they get into the job; they get tips that help them to make firm decisions that will protect both the patient and family. Therefore, the study incorporates everything to ensure the readers understand what leads to the other before making any decision.

Furthermore, it is always required that any methodology that applies in a qualitative study should give an account of which criteria should be used to obtain certain results. Also, the methodology should have the support that all the processes lie under the qualitative approach. For instance, when trying to reveal the experience nurses undergo as they try to contemplate the idea of withdrawing life-sustaining treatment and how to deal with patients family.

However, the setting of the study compliment with the main objective. For instance, it helps in the collection of data, its assessment and hence leading to better understanding of the whole qualitative approach. Since it is a health care matter, a hospital or any other organizations that deals with care giving is relevant. Therefore, it provides all the resources necessary like in this case the nurses who were used in the study as well as patients and their families. Moreover, all other materials of recording data are available to ensure a quality reference is maintained for future use (Norton & Bowers, 2010).

Data collection is another issue that really matters in a qualitative approach research. The reader should be able to contemplate all the information given and hence data collection should be precise and easy to understand. Vanderspank-Wright, Fothergill-Bourbannis, Braitman & Gagnon, (2011) uses the criteria of interviewing the nurses on different aspects. For instance, six critical care nurses were picked in this case. They were used as representative of a wider fraternity of nurses. In addition, choosing few participants in a study is one way of saving time and hence leading to a faster research that should yield quality results.

The authors of this study do consider the human rights and hence the questions addressed to the participants rotate around helping solve patients and families problems. For the same reason, the authors provide an account of ethical consideration. However, for any nursing research to become effective then there must be that section that involves variety of individuals. In addition, they also highly identify their subject and always take precaution in any step they take. It is also important to note that the evidence of data saturation is provided to ensure that a quality decision has been made. Moreover, the authors want all parties involved to feel comfortable due to the actions they take. In some cases, it is not an easy task but requires so much attention from all the parties; without one party getting involved then no decision can be approved (Norton & Bowers, 2010).

In addition, it is important for any qualitative research to have a clear way of identifying how one comes up with certain results. Healthcare department is one of the most sensitive institutions in the world and hence one slight mistake can lead to massive destruction. Therefore, Vanderspank-Wright, Fothergill-Bourbannis, Braitman & Gagnon, (2011) takes it as a chance to analyze all the data obtained with great care so as to avoid any silly mistake both in the present and in the future (Oliver, & Mahon, 2011) However, according to this article the data collected lead to a conclusion that the experiences of the nurses means it is a way of trying to do the right thing. After a while, nurses experience some sort of hardship due to memories and also living in the same profession that may demand for such calling.

However, the research that Vanderspank-Wright, Fothergill-Bourbannis, Braitman & Gagnon, (2011) have conducted meets all the evidences of scientific rigor. For instance, the study avoids as much as possible the quantitative measures (Patton, 2012). Moreover, all the points in the research are clear and easy to understand; no generalization of points for the purpose of completing the task. Therefore, the authors have aligned each point and section accordingly to ensure there is an easy ending.

In the conclusion bit, the authors have precisely given a small overview of how they have analyzed the nurses and the outcomes in that case. Though it does not separate any further recommendation, it leaves the reader with a good ending that leaves a mutual understanding. The conclusion sums up every point and gives some solution for future references. Therefore, the authors have identified the need to continue teaching nurses of issues relating to withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment, its importance and the reason as to why they should engage patients and their families at all cost.


Vanderspank-Wright, B., Fothergill-Bourbannis, F., Braitman, S. & Gagnon, P. (2011). Caring for patients and families at the end of life: The experiences of nurses during withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment. Dynamics, 22(4), 31-35.

Gamble, M. (2012). Withdrawal of life sustaining treatment. Critical Care Nurses. 32: 14-24

Oliver, D. & Mahon, S. (2011). Reading a research article part three: The data collection instrument. Clin J Oncol Nurs, 10(3): 423-26.

Patton, M. (2012). Qualitative research and evaluation; scientific rigor. Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications.

Norton, S. & Bowers, B. (2010). Working toward consensus: providers strategies to shift patients from curative to palliative treatment choices. Res Nurs Health; 24: 258-69.

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