Journal article

Caregivers´ descriptions of patients with advanced breast cancer in connection with supervision sessions in a surgical ward


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Publication Details

Author list: Danielson, Ella;Ödling, Gunvor

Publication year: 2001

Start page: 28

End page: 34

Number of pages: 7

ISSN: 0162-220X


The purpose of this study was to describe the content of caregivers (health care professionals) presentation of care situations as told at supervision sessions. For 1 year, 21 caregivers in a surgical ward of a county hospital in the middle of Sweden participated in a clinical supervision session 2 hours every third week. The participants in the supervision sessions were divided so as to form three mixed groups composed of registered nurses, practical nurses, physiotherapists, and physicians. The purpose of the supervision sessions was to give caregivers the opportunity to reflect on different care situations in a way that contributed to the development of patient care. The 38 supervision sessions were tape-recorded and transcribed verbatim. The transcripts were analyzed using a qualitative content analysis. The caregivers described difficult care situations focusing on the feelings of patients, relatives, and caregivers, with an emphasis on the caregivers being dominant. Difficult care situations were described as giving caregivers feelings of discomfort, powerlessness, and reduced self-esteem. These feelings were described as arising in connection with caring for women with advanced breast cancer and other seriously ill patients in an organization lacking clear goals and rules. This study found that supervision sessions offering an opportunity to reflect on the difficult care situations are important for caregivers. These sessions seem therefore to be of vital importance for the future development of cancer care on the surgical ward.


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