Bereavement care interventions and outcome criteria planned by community nurses in the Canary Islands


Nursing care in bereavement is complex. Primary health care is the ideal setting to support the bereaved, but we do not know much about the care plans designed by primary health care nurses in the treatment of grief.


To identify the outcomes criteria and interventions planned by nurses for mourners with and without complications in the Canary Islands.


Retrospective longitudinal study, using the electronic health records of the Canary Islands health service of people with a diagnosis of grieving, risk of complicated grieving and complicated grieving, in the period 2009-2014.


NOC outcomes criteria were recorded in 67% of the mourners, and up to 24 different outcomes were identified. The main outcomes measures were Grief resolution; Psychosocial adjustment, Life change; Coping; Family coping; Family social climate and Caregiver emotional health. The remaining outcomes were present in less than 1% of the mourners. Although the outcomes criteria proposed by nurses in the mourners with and without complications were quite homogeneous, differences in interventions were found. In 67% of the cases, NIC interventions were reported. Ninety-nine different interventions were identified in the mourners; the most frequent were Emotional support; Grief work facilitation; Active listening; Coping enhancement and counselling. The remaining identified interventions were present in less than 5% of patients. The main interventions in the mourners with complications were Grief work facilitation; Coping enhancement; Active listening; Counselling and Family integrity promotion.


Nurses state that there are more interventions and outcomes in mourners with complications. Given the few methodologically reliable studies that prove their effectiveness, continued research in this area is recommended.

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