Communicating with Family of Patients in Intensive Care Unit: Nurse’s Role

  • Panisa Boonyaratkalin Community Health Nursing Branch Srisavarindhira Thai Red Cross Institute of Nursing.
Keywords: communicating in intensive care unit, family of patients, nurse’s role


        The patients in the intensive care unit have to face life-threatening illnesses and complex treatments. Crisis illness not only affects patients but also their families. Proper communication with family is necessary to consider their needs. Nurses are public health personnel who play an important role in providing communication with the families of patients in the intensive care unit in each phase for responding to the their needs. This article will present the needs of both patients and their families, as well as the meaning and importance of communication with them, and the role of nurses in that communication, and look at the various communication techniques in order to achieve understanding and crate a guide for application.


Download data is not yet available.


Sole ML, Klein, DG, Moseley MJ. Introduction to critical care nursing. 7th ed. St. Louis Elesevier; 2017.

Urden LD, Stacy KM, Lough ME. Critical care nursing: diagnosis and management. 8th ed. Missouri: Mosby Elesevier; 2018.

Limumnoilap S, Tumnong C, editors. Critical care nursing. 8th ed. Khonkan: Klangnana- viittaya Press; 2014.

(in Thai)

Kongsuwan W. Nursing for critically ill patients at the end stage of life with technology. 2nd ed. Songkla: Chanmuangprinting; 2016. (in Thai)

Kusoom W, editor. Critical care nursing: A holistic approach. 6th ed. Bangkok: Sahaprachapanich; 2017.

(in Thai)

Singdong P. Jitpanya C. Relatives’ experiences in intensive care units: A qualitative study. Rama Nurs J 2012;18(3):404-17. (in Thai)

Pomrod T, Monkong S, Sirapo-ngam Y. Responses to Needs and Coping to Stress of Patients’ Relatives before Transferring from the Intensive Care Unit. Rama Nurs J 2011;17(1):75-89. (in Thai)

Singdong P, Jitpanya C. Caring for relatives of critically ill patients: Relatives’ perspectives. Princess of Naradhiwas University Journal 2011;3(3):17-32. (in Thai)

Adams A, Mannix T, Harrington A. Nurses' communication with families in the intensive care unit-a literature review. Nurs Crit Care 2017;22(2):70-80.

Khiewchaum R, Ngamkhum S, Chantapet K, Chantapet R, Promproh S. Family relative’s information needs in Intensive Care Unit, Prapokklao Hospital. J Prapokklao Hosp Clin Med Educat Center 2016;30(1)24-31. (in Thai)

Aitken L, Marshall A, Chaboyer W. ACCCN’s critical care nursing. 3rd ed. NSW, Australia: Elsevier; 2015.

Intarasombat P, and Kasemkitwattana S, editors. Handbook of skill development for nurse in caring end of life patients. Nonthaburi: Projects for a Driving National Strategy on Health Promotion in Caring End of Life, 2557-2559 BE (2014-2019 BE); 2016.

Riley J. Communication in Nursing. 7th ed. Missouri: Mosby Elsevier; 2012.

Woodrow P. Intensive care nursing a framework for practice. 3rd ed. London: Rouledge; 2012.

Sararach A, Communication in nursing service. Journal of Nursing Division 2014:41(2)1-5. (in Thai)

Puggina AC, lenne A, Carbonari KFBSDF, Parejo LS, Sapatini TF, Silva MJP. Perception of communication, satisfaction and importance of family needs in the Intensive Care Unit. Esc Anna Nery 2014:8(2):277-83.

Academic Articles