Migrant and Minority Family Members in the Intensive Care Unit. A Review of the Literature

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Heilberufe Science




Statistics show that people with migrant and minority background as patients are significant in numbers in the intensive care unit. This also puts family members in the perspective of nursing because family members are an inherent part of the intensive care unit. Family-centered care is perhaps most applicable to vulnerable populations like migrant family in the intensive care unit to meet family member’s needs. But very little is known about the situation of migrant and minority family members in the intensive care unit. The aim of the study was to explore the state of the science regarding family-centered care in the intensive care unit of patients with migration background in general and with a possible focus on major migrant populations in Austria—Former Yugoslavian und Turkish origin. A literature review investigated research articles that contained information on migrant and minority family members in the intensive care unit. Key points in the relevant articles were identified and categorized into themes with an explanation of findings at the end. Seventeen articles fulfilled the inclusion criteria. No article was found regarding groups of major migrant population groups in Austria. The included articles uncovered five predominant themes: importance of cultural norms, communication, family dynamics, universal caring, and nursing/provider deficit in culturally competent care. In order to provide adequate nursing care a more cohesive body of information on more specific geographic and cultural populations is recommended. Because of the complete lack of research regarding migrant families of Former Yugoslavian and Turkish origin into Austria, an exploration of this population is recommended.