Home care nurses' provision of support to families of the elderly at the end of life

Yuko Hirano, Noriko Yamamoto-Mitani, Mari Ueno, Shiho Takemori, Masayo Kashiwagi, Izumi Sato, Noa Miyata, Mari Kimata, Hiroki Fukahori, Masako Yamada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


In this article we describe our study of assistance for family decisions and caregiving by Japanese home care nurses to families of elderly relatives at the end of life. The participants were 31 nurses who had been evaluated as providing good end-of-life care. We carried out semistructured interviews concerning the practice of family support in two cases (cancer and noncancer). We conducted a qualitative analysis using the constant comparative approach and derived several categories inductively. Home care nurses are responsible for (a) estimating the possibility of dying at home, (b) visualizing what is coming and what can be done, (c) proposing where and how the family can say goodbye, (d) building family consensus, (e) coordinating resources, and (f) offering psychological support for end-of-life care. End-of-life family care by home care nurses is a process in which multiple components of care are provided with changing content as death approaches.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-213
Number of pages15
JournalQualitative Health Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Feb
Externally publishedYes


  • Asian people
  • caregiving
  • community
  • constant comparison
  • cultures
  • end-of-life issues
  • families
  • nursing
  • older people
  • palliative care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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