Understanding Hope in HIV Care: A Narrative Inquiry into the Experiences of Nurses in Ghana

  • Author / Creator
    Puplampu, Gideon L.
  • In this research, I sought to understand how nurses working in HIV care in Ghana live and work with hope. I tried to make visible how hope enhanced their work over time. Over several months in the summers of 2015 and 2016, I lived alongside five registered nurses as we explored how hope had shaped us. In this dissertation, I consider my narrative beginnings, review hope theories and the nature of hope in nursing practice alongside a narrative conceptualization of hope. My research puzzle was to inquire into what sustains nurses’ hope when working with people living with HIV in an acute care setting. I wanted to understand the experiences of nurses in Ghana and the ways that hope is intertwined with their experiences in HIV care. In this study, I invited five nurses from a tertiary hospital to make sense of their experiences of working with hope practices. The five participants—Eva, Lana, Berth, Jude, and Joy—and I attended to their stories to live by [a narrative conception of identity] using the commonplaces of narrative inquiry: temporality, sociality, and place. As we moved from field texts to research texts, we co-composed narrative accounts of their experiences. After looking across their narrative accounts, I identified four resonant narrative threads: becoming a nurse for people living with HIV over time; experiences of practicing with hope, despite hope threats; faith in God from which they gained strength; and learning to live with hope from childhood. By engaging in this inquiry, I learned that hope matters, but that it needs to be nourished. The commonplaces of narrative inquiry inspired an understanding of a narrative conception of hope, and made it visible that hope is an embodied lived experience. Calling on a Deweyan-inspired narrative conception of hope (LeMay, 2014) made it possible to live alongside nurses’ experiences of hope. I also learned that in order to sustain my 1hope I needed to stay wakeful to my hopeful practices

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  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
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    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.