Opinions and experiences of healthcare professionals regarding structured virtual patient visits in ICUs: A qualitative study
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CitationTürkmen, E., & Kebapçı, A. (2022). Opinions and experiences of healthcare professionals regarding structured virtual patient visits in ICUs: A qualitative study. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, doi:10.1111/jnu.12779
Objectives: This study aimed to reveal the experiences of healthcare professionals regarding a structured Virtual Patient Visit (sVPV) program implemented in an ICU during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and to share the process of establishing the program. Design: This qualitative, exploratory study was conducted using a semi-structured, in-depth interview method. Setting: The study was conducted in a university hospital ICU in Turkey (where a sVPV program was implemented) and comprised one physician, eight nurses, and one clerk who volunteered to participate in the study. The data were evaluated with content analysis, and themes and sub-themes were determined. Findings: Five themes and 13 subthemes were obtained: (1) an essential program during the pandemic, (2) contributing to patient's recovery, (3) family-centered care, (4) innovativeness, and (5) sustainability. Conclusion: The results show that the sVPV program is highly innovative and effective and contributed to positive patient outcomes and family-centered care practices during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, it was revealed that in order to conduct sVPVs effectively, organizational planning, such as legal processes, and the employment of experienced and competent healthcare professionals, should be well managed. Clinical relevance: A well-designed sVPV program specific to the setting alleviates anxiety among patients and family members, increases patient motivation and healing, and decreases the workloads of healthcare professionals. It is recommended that the sVPV program, which can be easily used during not only COVID-19 pandemics but also during other crises, be adopted in all ICUs and carried out by a dedicated nurse or healthcare provider. © 2022 Sigma Theta Tau International.