Korean J Hosp Palliat Care.  2013 Dec;16(4):216-222. 10.14475/kjhpc.2013.16.4.216.

Nurses' Emotional Responses and Ethical Attitudes towards Elderly Patients' DNR Decision

Affiliations
  • 1Mokpo Beautiful Hospital, Mokpo, Korea.
  • 2Department of Nursing, Dongshin University, Naju, Korea. cnacall@hanmail.net

Abstract

PURPOSE
The purpose of this study was to examine nurses' emotional responses and ethical attitudes towards elderly patients' Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) decision.
METHODS
Data were collected using a questionnaire which was filled out by 153 nurses who worked in nursing homes and general hospitals. Data were analyzed using real numbers, percentages, means, standard deviations and Pearson's correlation coefficients with SPSS 19.0 program.
RESULTS
The average score for ethical attitudes towards the DNR decision was 2.68 out of 4. Under the ethical attitudes category, the highest score was found with a statement that said 'Although they will not perform cardiopulmonary resuscitate (CPR), it is right to do their best with other treatments for DNR Patients'. Items regarding emotional responses to the DNR decision, the average score was 2.36 out of 4. Among them, the highest score was achieved on 'I understand and sympathize'. No significant correlation was found between ethical attitudes and emotional responses in relation to patients' DNR decision (r=-0.12, P=0.13).
CONCLUSION
Regarding elderly patients' DNR decision, nurses showed somewhat highly ethical attitudes and slightly positive emotional response. A follow-up study is needed to investigate variables that affect our results.

Keyword

Resuscitation orders; Ethics; Emotions; Aged

MeSH Terms

Aged*
Ethics
Hospitals, General
Humans
Nursing Homes
Resuscitation Orders
Surveys and Questionnaires
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