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Encountering offenders in community palliative care settings: challenges for care provision.

Lillie, Alison; Corcoran, Mary; Wrigley, Anthony; Read, Sue


Alison Lillie

Sue Read


BACKGROUND: There is very little research into the way that offender management strategies impinge on the practices and decision-making of palliative care personnel in community settings. AIMS: To improve understanding of the challenges that community palliative care service providers encounter when caring for people who have been sentenced to custody and are under the supervision of the prison or probation services. METHODS: This paper discusses one part of a larger multidisciplinary study on bereavement, loss and grief in the criminal justice system. It reports the findings from a focus group with 10 health professionals working within specialist community palliative care services. Thematic analysis was undertaken to identify and explicate the most significant themes arising from the transcript data. RESULTS: There were situations where the participants were able to identify that patients were under the jurisdiction of the criminal justice system or had relatives in custody. Three themes emerged that highlighted distinctive aspects of providing care to this patient group. These themes were: patients under prison, probation or police supervision altered the dynamics of care provision; prisoners were restricted from supporting or contacting their dying relatives in the community; and participants (professionals) were obstructed from supporting patients at home because of criminal or antisocial behaviour by relatives of the dying. CONCLUSIONS: Health professionals face multiple challenges that curtail them from fully realising the aims of palliative care for patients and relatives under criminal justice supervision, in ways that merit further consideration and research.


Lillie, A., Corcoran, M., Wrigley, A., & Read, S. (2018). Encountering offenders in community palliative care settings: challenges for care provision. International Journal of Palliative Nursing, 368 - 375.

Acceptance Date Aug 2, 2018
Publication Date Aug 2, 2018
Journal Int J Palliat Nurs
Print ISSN 1357-6321
Publisher Mark Allen Healthcare
Pages 368 - 375
Keywords Attitude of Health Personnel (D001291), Bereavement (D001601), Community Health Nursing (D003152), Focus Groups (D017144), Grief (D006117), Hospice and Palliative Care Nursing (D064946), Humans (D006801), Palliative Care (D010166), Practice Patterns, Nurs
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