Collections > UNC Chapel Hill Undergraduate Honors Theses Collection > A Nursing Tool to Promote Patient- and Family-Centered Care in Adult Critical Care: The Family Care Assessment

Families of critical care patients experience stress that negatively impacts the family’s well-being and impedes the family’s ability to support the patient (Horn & Tesh, 2000). The patient- and family-centered care (PFCC) model emphasizes the importance of mutually beneficial partnerships among health care providers, patients and families, and one of the core components of PFCC is family participation (Institute for Patient and Family-Centered Care, 2010). Research indicates that involving families in providing care to critically ill patients is an effective way to meet family needs and reduce stress (Al Mutair, Plummer, O’Brien, & Clerehan, 2013). Additionally, evidence suggests that critical care nurses, families of critical care patients, and critical care patients themselves all support family participation in patient care (Garrouste-Orgeas et al, 2010). Critical care nurses are in a unique position to lead interventions to meet family needs by promoting family involvement in care. The Family Care Assessment is a tool that critical care nurses can use to assess the family’s desire to become active participants in patient care. I created this tool after conducting a review of the literature on nursing care of families of critical care patients which revealed a need for specific interventions to facilitate nurses in caring for families. The purpose of the Family Care Assessment is to facilitate a positive and productive relationship between the nurse and family, with the ultimate goal of supporting the family and improving patient care.