Research study. Palliative care nursing in rural Western Australia.

R McConigley, L Kristjanson, A Morgan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


This article presents the findings of a study of rural palliative care nurses in Western Australia. The number of rural centres in Western Australia offering palliative care services is increasing; however, at present there is little empirical data available about the roles of the nurses involved. This study was undertaken to begin to correct this deficit. The study examined basic social processes associated with the role of rural palliative care nurses, and identifies issues that affect the nurses' professional practice. A modified grounded theory approach was used to form a conceptual framework that describes rural palliative care nursing. Theoretical sampling techniques were used to identify the six palliative care nurses working in rural Western Australia who participated in the study. Data were generated using in-depth interview and participant observation techniques. Constant comparative analysis of the data was employed to allow concepts to emerge from the data. The central theme that developed is the all-consuming nature of the rural palliative care nurse's role. Three subthemes relating to multiple roles, expectations of nurses, and coping strategies are also discussed. This research explored issues that rural palliative care nurses feel are relevant to their professional practice, and it describes the basic social processes inherent in the rural palliative care nurse's role. Recommendations for nursing research, education, administration and clinical practice are presented.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)80-90 11p
JournalInternational Journal of Palliative Nursing
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2000


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