Implementation Project for the Role of the Clinical Nurse Leader in Palliative Care.The role of the nurses is not limited to providing medical care but extends to psychosocial care taking into consideration the entire gamut of the issues involved in the well being of the patients…
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In the history of mankind, medical treatment for diseases has undergone radical changes during the recent years and now it encompasses the issues associated with technological advancements, socioeconomic dimensions, palliative care for the terminally ill, management of chronic illness and promotion of health and prevention of diseases. Palliative care is an area in the profession where the nursing professionals play an important role compared to the other medical professionals, and it calls for involvement and dedication on the part of the nurses. The role of the nurses is not limited to providing medical care but extends to psychosocial care taking into consideration the entire gamut of the issues involved in the well being of the patients. The amelioration of the hardships faced by the patients which is predominantly the focal issue of the profession is very complex as it is also related to the psychological conditions, the level knowledge, the social background and the economic conditions of the patients. It is also important to note that the understanding and support of the family members and friends plays a crucial role in the care given to the patients. Apart from streamlining the day-to-day operations, the most important role of the clinical nurse leader lies in instilling confidence in the minds of the patients in managing their own affairs with less and less dependence on the institutions and the family members or friends through empowering them. This will resolve uncertainties in the relationship, improves the quality of care and satisfaction of the patients. This will also in the long run translate into reduction in length of stay in the hospitals, less dependence on human resources of the hospital, understanding of the practical implications of the treatment for readjusting their mind-set in facing the problems with clarity. This will make the patients to approach the service providers as and when the need arises rather than putting continuous pressure on them. This paper seeks to study the role of the Clinical Nurse Leader in relation to the staff nurses and the nurse extenders in increasing the direct care activities and efficiency in time management with the aim of improvement in patient outcomes in a hospital setup with Palliative Care Division having four wards; one for children, two general wards and one for ICU staffed with medical professionals, nurses and social workers. Mostly, the patients admitted are terminally ill who need palliative and psychosocial care. The diagnoses vary from cancers of various sorts to chronic pancreatitis. The services in respect of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and physiotherapy are provided by the specialists drawn from the other division(s) attached to the hospital based on the requisitions from Palliative Care, apart from the medical professionals attached to the palliative care. The critical areas of study relate to staffing plan, recruitment plan, training, and performance evaluation. It is an accepted principle that delegation of authority is possible, but not delegation of responsibilities. The position of Clinical Nurse Leader calls for greater responsibilities which include the responsibility for the performance of the whole team. Therefore, specific patient or staff outcomes need to be measurable for effective control and management. Though
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