Programme no. 265-P
Professional Development
“It wasn’t as hard as I’d thought” – a focus group study about newly qualified doctors’ learning experiences with end-of-life care
Anette Fosse*1, Kirsti Malterud2, Margrethe Schaufel3, Sabine Ruths4
1Allmennmedisin forskningsenhet,Uni Heath Research,Bergen,Norway, 2Allmennmedisin forskningsenhet,Uni Heath Research,Bergen,Norway, 3Department of Thoracic Medicine,Haukeland universitetssykehus,Bergen,Norway, 4Allmennmedisin forskningsenhet,Uni Heath Research,Bergen,Norway
* = Presenting author
Objectives: We aimed at exploring house officers’ learning experiences with end-of-life care in nursing homes, with a special focus on dialogues about death.
Background: In Norway, 48% of deaths take place in nursing homes. Health care professionals often find dialogues about death difficult. Newly qualified medical doctors serve as house officers in nursing homes during internship. We need knowledge about how nursing homes can become useful sites for learning about end-of-life care.
Results: Analysis after two focus group interviews revealed two preliminary themes. The house officers in nursing homes expressed both powerlessness and coping when handling end-of-life care and dialogues about death. The learning community in nursing homes contributed to the development of professional identity.
Material/Methods: House officers in nursing homes (n=X) participated in three focus group interviews. The participants were invited to share experiences with end-of-life care in nursing homes, to tell about preparatory dialogues with patients and relatives, and how their experiences made an impact on their thoughts about death and their role as a doctor. The interviews were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim. Data were analyzed with systematic text condensation. We used Lave & Wenger’s theory about situated learning to support our interpretations, focusing how the newly qualified doctors experienced end-of-life care through participation in the nursing home’s community of practice.
Conclusion: The results from all three focus group interviews and our conclusions will be presented at the Nordic Congress 2015.
Points for discussion: - Transferability to other medical contexts and other countries.

- Implications of the results for nursing homes as learning facilities for medical doctors.