The nurse advocate in end-of-life care

Kathy Hebert, Harold Moore, Joan Rooney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


End-of-life nursing encompasses many aspects of care: pain and symptom management, culturally sensitive practices, assisting patients and their families through the death and dying process, and ethical decisionmaking. Advocacy has been identified as a key core competency for the professional nurse, yet the literature reveals relevant barriers to acquiring this skill. Challenges exist, such as limitations in nursing school curricula on the death and dying process, particularly in multicultural settings; differing policies and practices in healthcare systems; and various interpretations of end-of-life legal language. Patricia Benner's conceptual model of advocacy behaviors in end-of-life nursing provides the framework in which nurses can become effective patient advocates. Developing active listening and effective communication skills can enhance the nurse-patient trust relationship and create a healing environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)325-329
Number of pages5
JournalOchsner Journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Advance directives
  • Advocacy
  • Comfort measures
  • Dignity
  • End-of-life care
  • Stages of grief

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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