What is a compassionate response in the emergency department? Learner evaluation of an End-of-Life Essentials online education module

Deb Rawlings, Megan Winsall, Huahua Yin, Kim Devery

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    Objective: To evaluate the End-of-Life Essentials education module ‘Emergency Department End-of-Life Care’ and explore learners' views on what constitutes a compassionate response in the ED. Methods: The present study used a multi-methods approach. Learners comprised a mix of nurses, doctors and allied health professionals. A quantitative pre-post evaluation analysis of learners' (n = 959) knowledge, skills, attitude and confidence was conducted, along with a qualitative thematic content analysis on learner responses (n = 538) to the post-evaluation question, ‘What is a compassionate response for you in the emergency department?’ Data were extracted for a 12-month period, 6 May 2019 to 6 May 2020. Results: Learners' post-evaluation ranks of knowledge, skill, attitude and confidence were significantly higher than the pre-evaluation ranks (P < 0.001). Emerging themes from the qualitative data were organised into three overarching categories: communication skills (e.g. listening and use of names), care discussion and provision (e.g. provide information and discuss care plans) and humanising healthcare (e.g. emotional support and empathy, taking the time, and offering kindness and comfort). Conclusion: The ‘Emergency Department End-of-Life Care’ module had a significant positive impact on learners in relation to perceived knowledge, skill, attitude and confidence. This evaluation suggests that the End-of-Life Essentials ED module could be a useful online learning resource for health professionals.

    Original languageEnglish
    Number of pages9
    JournalEMA - Emergency Medicine Australasia
    DOIs
    Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - May 2021

    Keywords

    • communication
    • compassion
    • emergency department
    • end-of-life care
    • online learning

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