The importance of interdisciplinary communication in the process of anticipatory prescribing

Wilson, Eleanor and Seymour, Jane (2017) The importance of interdisciplinary communication in the process of anticipatory prescribing. International Journal of Pallative Nursing, 23 (3). pp. 129-135. ISSN 1357-6321

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In the UK there has been a widespread introduction of ‘anticipatory prescribing’ in community based palliative care. This involves general practitioners (GPs) writing prescriptions in anticipation of them being needed and has been encouraged to try to minimise the risk of patients suffering uncontrolled symptoms and distress; a key reason why terminally ill patients are admitted to hospital in contradiction of most people's preferences. This paper presents the findings from an ethnographic study of healthcare professionals across four care homes and four community sites in two regions (East Midlands and Lancashire/South Cumbria) of the UK. Data were collected from a range of community health professionals, resulting in 83 episodes of observation and 72 interviews. Findings highlight how essential good interdisciplinary communication is to the process of anticipatory prescribing and end-of-life care. This study found that when interdisciplinary communication worked well the anticipatory prescribing process could be carried out smoothly, optimising patient care.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in International Journal of Pallative Nursing, copyright © MA Healthcare, after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Health Sciences
Identification Number: 10.12968/ijpn.2017.23.3.129
Depositing User: Wilson, Eleanor
Date Deposited: 08 Mar 2018 08:49
Last Modified: 08 Mar 2018 12:27

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