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It's not all doom and gloom: perceptions of medical students talking to hospice patients

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

  • Amy Gadoud
  • Yousef Adcock
  • Lesley Jones
  • Sim Koon
  • Miriam Johnson
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>16/09/2013
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Palliative Medicine
Issue number9
Number of pages5
Pages (from-to)1125-1129
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Background: End-of-life care has become a priority in medical education internationally. A previous study of hospice patients and staff regarding medical students teaching in a hospice showed positive responses from patients and hospice staff. However concern was expressed by some staff regarding medical students' welfare, contributing to gatekeeping by professionals. Studies have shown that medical students feel underprepared to care for the dying by the time they qualify. Objective: The study's objective was to explore in more detail the views and experience of medical students who had spoken with patients during their hospice placement. Design: This was a qualitative study. Setting/Subjects: The study was carried out with 14 Hull York Medical School (HYMS) students who had responded in an electronic survey that they had spoken with patients during their hospice placement. Measurement: Semistructured interviews provided the study's data. Results: Although students expressed some anxieties prior to their hospice visit about meeting patients who were near the end of life, they felt that the overall experience, and the time spent with patients in particular, provided valuable learning about palliative care and preparation for caring for dying patients. Conclusions: We would encourage staff to not be overprotective but to support students to take every opportunity to meet with patients in a hospice.