Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Lynda Crawford


Palliative care is a type of specialty care that focuses on the improvement of the quality of life and prevention of suffering of those with progressive serious illnesses by addressing the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of patients and families. There are many misperceptions about palliative care by providers, patients, and their families. Inconsistent interventions and a lack of palliative care education for providers results in delayed palliative care involvement. Delayed involvement results in patients with unmet palliative care needs. The purpose of this project was to develop clinical practice guidelines to ensure appropriate care based on the best available evidence, reduce variability in practice, provide criteria for referral, focus on education, and promote efficient use of resources. Mishel’s uncertainty in illness theory and the peaceful end-of-life theory were the conceptual frameworks used to guide this project. An expert panel was developed consisting of two nurse practitioners, two physicians, a chaplain, and an ethicist to determine what current evidence-based practices would facilitate high-quality nursing practice to identify and address patients with unmet palliative care needs. The panel used the Fineout-Overholt tool to rank and score the 14 research articles and assisted with identifying recommendations used for the development of the clinical practice guidelines. The AGREE II tool was used to evaluate the final clinical practice guidelines. The expert panel rated the guidelines’ overall quality as 94.5%, and each member recommended the guidelines for use. The clinical practice guidelines impact social change by contributing to the health and wellness of society by providing a standard of care for those with serious illnesses and resources for health care providers.

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Nursing Commons