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Scenario Detail

Palliative Care for Chronically Ill

Developed by: Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston College


The patient in this scenario has an exacerbation of her heart failure. However, the main focus of the program is primarily on improving the participant’s comfort with assessing and planning for the patient’s palliative care needs, not on the physiological aspects. Should a participant have learning needs in this area, the faculty can focus more on the components of the physical assessment and nursing care of the patient.

A completed functional health pattern assessment (FHPA) is included in the participant materials to provide background information on the patient. If participants would benefit from performing this assessment by collecting information on the FHPA form, faculty can provide a blank form and use the completed form as a guide to respond for the patient.

The developers believe that the scenario materials are able to be used for a patient with any chronic illness (i.e. COPD, HIV, etc.) with the development of a brief patient profile to illustrate the specific disease manifestations.


Learning Objectives

The purpose of this two hour scenario-based simulation educational program is to provide participants with an opportunity to perform an assessment on a chronically ill patient with palliative care needs. Specific learning objectives that support the achievement of the Nurse of the Future Nursing Core Competencies© will be met with this program. At the completion of this program participants will:

  1. Assess physical and psychological symptoms related to the patient’s disease and treatment plan.
  2. Anticipate and plan for physical, psychological, social, and spiritual needs of the patient.
  3. Demonstrate sensitivity to personal and cultural influences on the individuals’ reactions to the illness experience and end of life.
  4. Discuss the importance of interdisciplinary team work in the care of patients with palliative care needs.
  5. Describe communication techniques that facilitate discussions regarding palliative care needs.
  6. Improve comfort with utilizing communication techniques to facilitate discussions regarding palliative care needs.

Available Materials

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Previous Feedback:

Submitted 9/20/2012 12:19:48 PM from Jo-Ann Cole

Population type: BSN students    Number of participants: 19


Great topic for a scenario!
We haven't used this scenario, as we have been running our simulations with scripts.
Would love to have the simulation file available as a doc file, and
the Supporting Documents file was not available.
The Impending Stroke scenario seemed to have doc & pdf files.
This format is more helpful for us at this time.
thank you so much for all your work ...