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Interactions between family members and staff in intensive care units--an observation and interview study.
Ersta Sköndal University College, Department of palliative care research.
2006 (English)In: International Journal of Nursing Studies, ISSN 0020-7489, E-ISSN 1873-491X, Vol. 43, no 6, 707-16 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: Research about interactions between family members and staff are sparse, although family members' needs and experiences in intensive care units are well researched areas. AIM: The aim was to describe and interpret interactions between family members and staff in intensive care units. METHODS: Interviews (n=24) with family members and repeated observations of interactions of family members and staff in intensive care units were performed and analysed together by means of content analysis. RESULTS: The initial interactions between staff and family members had a substantial effect on family members and influenced their further interactions with the staff. Two kinds of interactions were revealed; mutual understanding and mutual misunderstanding. Family members, who understood the explicit information and the implicit messages were open in communication with the staff, adjusted well to the system, were acknowledged by the staff and sometimes consoled. Family members, who had difficulties understanding information and implicit messages drew back from communication with staff, did not adjust to the system and were sometimes insulted by the staff. CONCLUSIONS: Unambiguous information from the staff is important for developing interactions of mutual understanding. The results may be a starting point for intensive care unit staff to reflect on how all family members are initially met and further informed and treated. Further research of family members' experiences of interactions with staff in a longitudinal perspective and the influence of critical illness on families are needed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. Vol. 43, no 6, 707-16 p.
National Category
Nursing
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:esh:diva-534DOI: 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2005.10.005PubMedID: 16310196OAI: oai:DiVA.org:esh-534DiVA: diva2:344421
Available from: 2010-08-19 Created: 2010-08-19 Last updated: 2011-05-20Bibliographically approved

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