Each of the four research questions used by Curcio enhances a qualitative inquiry, considering the phenomenon of the study. Her study is prompted by the fact that all nurses and have severe difficulties dealing with young patients’ deaths. The death of an adult might be considered a terminal to a well-lived life, but the death of a child is perceived as a life that has been cut short. Pediatric healthcare providers are therefore traumatized whenever a pediatric patient succumbs (Curcio, 2017, p. 8). Unfortunately, few studies have been conducted to address such situations in the healthcare sector. The article intends to equip healthcare providers with peer-reviewed, professional information on dealing with the dying process of a pediatric patient. The chosen research questions address this issue from different perspectives. Firstly, the questions look into the relationships between nurses, patients, and the patient’s families. More importantly, they analyze how nurses deal with their thoughts when children are approaching death and how they integrate such thoughts into their practice.
The study was conducted based on a qualitative research design. It obtained results and conclusions by comparing the original experiences, actions, and feelings to the prevailing state of a common issue. A convenient, purposeful, networking sampling technique was used to facilitate this. The nine nurses interviewed during the study were selected based on their availability, willingness, and respective years of professional experience (Curcio, 2017, p. 9). This information is availed on the ninth page under the “sample” section. Curcio tabulated the six philosophical steps that enhanced the analysis of the data obtained from nurses’ narrations.
Prolonged engagement is the main strategy used by Curcio to obtain qualitative data. She utilized open-ended, non-leading questions while interviewing the nurses to ensure they could open up and share their lived experiences. She also ensured that the selected nurses had different years of professional experience and different social standards. That also gave room for a wide range of data. The results were then compared to obtain their similarity index and approve their validity and reliability.
The primary ethical consideration widely discussed in this article is the provision of healthcare with the nurses’ well-being at risk. It is evident that the nurses face various challenges, physical, emotional, and psychological while providing healthcare services to dying children. As narrated by the nurses, they are forced to live with repeated situations of mental disturbance whenever pediatric patients pass on. Therefore, they provide care to the dying children, yet their health remains on edge. The article focuses on determining a clear path to sustain the nurses’ well-being.
In the discussion, the author enhances a critical understanding that censoring is a fundamental mode of adaptation. She elaborates that censoring mediates the response to stimuli, whereby the nurse’s reaction is the response and the dying child is the stimuli. Censoring integrates the dying process of a child to the caregiver’s reaction, enhancing the optimum well-being of the caregiver. The narrations the interviewed nurses gave were satisfactorily reflected in each of the themes, including sorrow, empathy, self-preservation, relationship, certainty, and ambivalence. The findings were also strongly related to results obtained in previous studies, for instance, in the article “Morgan, D. (2009). Caring for dying children: Assessing the needs of the pediatric palliative care nurse. Pediatric Nursing 35 (2), 86-90” confirms that the parents and nurses of dead children remain in grief for a long duration. The stories told by the nurses enlighten the healthcare sector and enable it to improve safety strategies for both the nurses and pediatric patients (Curcio, 2017, p. 13). The article suggests that further studies should be conducted to focus on censoring as a fundamental factor in any process of human adaptation.
This study can be transferred to many other disciplines and human processes. For instance, it can be applied to the education sector to assist in understanding the lived experiences of teachers and curriculum instructors dealing with children who fail or drop out of school due to natural or artificial causes. Some teachers find it distressing since the learners’ failure is likely to be blamed on them.
Curcio, D. L. (2017). The lived experiences of nurses caring for dying pediatric patients. Pediatric Nursing, 43(1), 8–14.