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Enhancing psychosocial and spiritual palliative care: Four-year results of the program of comprehensive care for people with advanced illnesses and their families in Spain

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  07 November 2016

Xavier Gómez-Batiste
Affiliation:
The Qualy End-of-Life Observatory–WHO Collaborating Center for Palliative Care Programs, Catalan Institute of Oncology. Barcelona, Spain
Dolors Mateo-Ortega
Affiliation:
The Qualy End-of-Life Observatory–WHO Collaborating Center for Palliative Care Programs, Catalan Institute of Oncology. Barcelona, Spain
Cristina Lasmarías
Affiliation:
The Qualy End-of-Life Observatory–WHO Collaborating Center for Palliative Care Programs, Catalan Institute of Oncology. Barcelona, Spain
Anna Novellas
Affiliation:
The Qualy End-of-Life Observatory–WHO Collaborating Center for Palliative Care Programs, Catalan Institute of Oncology. Barcelona, Spain
Jose Espinosa
Affiliation:
The Qualy End-of-Life Observatory–WHO Collaborating Center for Palliative Care Programs, Catalan Institute of Oncology. Barcelona, Spain
Elba Beas
Affiliation:
The Qualy End-of-Life Observatory–WHO Collaborating Center for Palliative Care Programs, Catalan Institute of Oncology. Barcelona, Spain
Sara Ela
Affiliation:
The Qualy End-of-Life Observatory–WHO Collaborating Center for Palliative Care Programs, Catalan Institute of Oncology. Barcelona, Spain
Javier Barbero
Affiliation:
Hematology Unit, Hospital Universitario La Paz. Madrid, Spain
FOR THE “LA CAIXA” FOUNDATION
Affiliation:
Area of Social Integration, La Caixa Foundation. Barcelona, Spain
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

Objective:

We aimed to describe the overall quantitative and qualitative results of a “La Caixa” Foundation and World Health Organization Collaborating Center Program entitled “Comprehensive Care for Patients with Advanced Illnesses and their Families” after four years of experience.

Method:

Qualitative and quantitative methods were employed to assess the program. Quasiexperimental, prospective, multicenter, single-group, and pretest/posttest methods were utilized to assess the quantitative data. The effectiveness of psychosocial interventions was assessed at baseline (visit 1) and after four follow-up visits. The following dimensions were assessed: mood state, discomfort, anxiety, degree of adjustment or adaptation to disease, and suffering. We also assessed the four dimensions of the spiritual pain scale: faith or spiritual beliefs, valuable faith or spiritual beliefs, meaning in life, and peace of mind/forgiveness. Qualitative analyses were performed via surveys to evaluate stakeholder satisfaction.

Results:

We built 29 psychosocial support teams involving 133 professionals—mainly psychologists and social workers. During the study period, 8,964 patients and 11,810 family members attended. Significant improvements were observed in the psychosocial and spiritual dimensions assessed. Patients, family members, and stakeholders all showed high levels of satisfaction.

Significance of Results:

This model of psychosocial care could serve as an example for other countries that wish to improve psychosocial and spiritual support. Our results confirm that specific psychosocial interventions delivered by well-trained experts can help to ease suffering and discomfort in end-of-life and palliative care patients, particularly those with high levels of pain or emotional distress.

Type
Original Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2016 

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