GPT Task 2
A terminal illness can have a devastating effect, not only on the patient, but the family as well. Caring for the patient does not just involve physically caring for the patient, but rather involves the holistic care, which is “all nursing practice that has healing the whole person as its goal” (American Holistic Nurses’ Association, 1998). The nurse becomes the therapeutic partner, which involves the care of the mind, body, and spirit, and is at the forefront of this care. It involves the patient and the care of the family during this difficult time. Personal Perceptions
Caring for a patient that is dying can be a very difficult situation for anyone to be in. If the nurse has been through a personal experience, it can make even more challenging. Some nurses can shy away from a dying patient because it can be too hard to handle, but this is the time that they need you most. Focusing on the patient and setting personal feelings aside is key. The nurse can be one of the most important roles in the dying process. Patients look to their nurse as a guide, and an advocate when they are no longer able to make decisions on their own. Not only are you caring medically for the patient, but holistically as well. Is this patient spiritual? Are they ok with dying? Scared? Do they have a good family support system? Each patient is different, and each nurse is different, but you need to be able to care for each one individually. What helps one patient may not help the next. Getting to know the patient, likes and dislikes, family life, and religious beliefs is how the nurse develops a plan to care for this patient.
Religious and spiritual needs should be addressed with each patient and family in the beginning of the process. The patient, knowing that they are supported spiritually and that these needs will be met after death, could bring them a lot of peace. This could any spiritual leader, rituals, or needs that can make them more comfortable. This process can also be hard for some nurses to do if they do not agree with their patient’s religious beliefs. Opinions about religion are not something to make known when taking care of one’s patients, but a nurse can draw from their own experiences. In order to properly care for your patient spiritually, a nurse needs to understand her own. Whatever you believe in or worship, think about the peace it brings, and then use those feelings to care for your patient in that manner. A nurse that builds on inner strength, love, and respect will be a more thoughtful, caring nurse. Strategies
Strategies in the plan for Mrs. Thomas can include a variety of things. With this case, and most, helping one issue can help the other, which is holistically caring for the patient. At the core of the issue is pain relief for Mrs. Thomas. The doctor should be involved and made aware of any alternative or complimentary help that is used to help her relieve her pain. The doctor may also have other ideas for medication that may help as well. Relaxation techniques, use of art and/or music therapy, and connecting Mrs. Thomas with spiritual counseling could all help her get some pain relief. Secondly, helping connect with her family could have a tremendous effect on how both Mr. and Mrs. Thomas are dealing with the dying process. In Mr. Thomas’ case, having the family near him and not having him face this alone, could help him with his depression. Lastly, the nurse should try to focus on getting the family some financial assistance. The stress of financial issues, is having a domino effect on the couple. It is causing Mr. Thomas stress, causing his depression, and ultimately hurting Mrs. Thomas by not having the full support of her husband.
Nursing Care Plan
A. Holistic Care
In this scenario, the three nursing diagnoses are chronic pain, ineffective relationship, and caregiver role strain. In working with a...
References: Kim, A., Fall, P., & Wang, D. (2005, November 1). Palliative Care: Optimizing Quality of Life.
Retrieved July 23, 2014, from http://www.jaoa.org/content/105/suppl_5/S9.full
Welcome to AHNA: What is Holistic Nursing? (2014). Retrieved July 23, 2014, from
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