Toward a Practice-Informed Agenda for Hospice Intervention Research: What Are Staff Members’ Biggest Challenges?

Karla T. Washington, Leticia M. Alaniz Staner, Benjamin E. Collie, Kevin W. Craig, George Demiris, Debra Parker Oliver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The translation of evidence-based interventions into routine hospice care is impeded by numerous barriers, including a disconnect between research priorities and clinical care. To inform the development of a more practice-informed agenda for hospice intervention research, our team conducted a qualitative descriptive study, posing the following research questions: 1) How do hospice staff members describe their most significant work-related challenges? and 2) What regulatory changes do hospice staff members report would most improve hospice care? To answer these research questions, we interviewed 22 hospice staff members and then conducted a template analysis of the interview content. In doing so, we identified themes that described challenges in 5 key areas: time, documentation, professional roles, recruitment and retention, and burn-out. In addition, we identified a perceived need among hospice staff members for more regulatory flexibility and clarity. Based on our findings, we conclude that a practice-informed agenda for hospice intervention research includes the development and testing of interventions that increase efficiency, explicitly speak to the humanity of hospice care, and elevate the roles of all members of the interdisciplinary team.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)467-471
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2021


  • bereavement
  • chaplaincy
  • hospice
  • nursing
  • policy
  • regulations
  • social work
  • volunteers


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