Review of communication and family caregiver content in nursing texts

Betty Ferrell, Rose Virani, Marcia Grant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Purpose. As part of a project to strengthen nursing education in end-of-life (EOL) care, content in major nursing education textbooks was evaluated for the amounts addressing communication and family caregiver topics. methods. Content analysis of 50 nursing textbooks selected from a potential of more than 700 texts. The texts were reviewed using an analysis framework encompassing 9 essential areas of EOL care. The methods included content analysis as well as quantification of the content present in the texts. findings. Only 2% of the overall content and 1.4% of chapters of nursing texts were related to EOL care. Of the EOL content, 11% addressed communication and 5% concerned information on family caregivers CONCLUSIONS. Based on the analysis, many deficiencies in the texts were identified including inaccurate information and the lack of information on these two critical EOL topics. IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING PRACTICE. Nursing texts have limited content on EOL care. Improvement in textbooks is essential to prepare nurses to care for patients at the EOL. Achieving the goal of improved texts and the broader goals of strengthened education and improved patient care will require collaboration with publishers and commitment by professionals with expertise in EOL care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)97-107
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Hospice and Palliative Nursing
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Communication
  • End-of-life care
  • Family caregivers
  • Nursing education
  • Terminal illness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Community and Home Care
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing

Cite this