Home-care nurses assist many advanced cancer patients desiring to live in the familiar surroundings of their own home until the day they die. The purpose of this study was to increase the understanding concerning home-care nurse experience with the Norwegian version of the medication kit as a tool in symptom management for the terminally ill. The study had a qualitative, descriptive, and explorative design, based on hermeneutic methodology. Two focus group interviews with 4 subsequent in-depth interviews helped generate data. The nurses reported how thorough planning and clear instructions on medication kit usage gave security and facilitated proper application. Good collaboration with primaryphysicians, including accessibility and clarifying meetings in particular, was necessary. In the past, infrequent use of the medication kit hindered its relevance for symptom management. Home-care nurses were often alone with the responsibility for assessing the patient and administering medications, leading to unjustifiable professional conditions, particularly during night shifts. Thus, clear guidelines, planning and clarifying meetings with primary physicians, helped to facilitate the use of the medication kit.
Katrine Staats, MClinNurs, RN, is PhD student, Centre for Elderly and Nursing Home Medicine, Department of Global Public Health and Primary Care, University of Bergen, Norway.
Oscar Tranvåg, PhD, MScN, PMHNP, RN, is associate professor, Centre for Elderly and Nursing Home Medicine, Department of Global Public Health and Primary Care, University of Bergen; Norwegian National Advisory Unit on Women’s Health, Oslo University Hospital, Rikshospitalet, Norway; and Faculty of Health and Social Sciences, Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, Sogndal.
Ellen Karine Grov, PhD, MScN, RN, is professor, Institute of Nursing and Health Promotion, Oslo Metropolitan University, Norway.
The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.
Address correspondence to Ellen Karine Grov, PhD, MScN, RN, Institute of Nursing and Health Promotion, Oslo Metropolitan University, PO Box 4, St. Olavs Plass, 0130 Oslo, Norway (Ellen-Karine.Grov@oslomet.no).