By Barney G. Glaser
Should sufferers learn they're loss of life? How do households react while one in all their contributors is dealing with dying? Who may still exhibit that demise is impending? How does clinic staff—doctors, nurses, and attendants—act towards the loss of life sufferer and his family?
Death, as a social ritual, is among the nice turning issues in human lifestyles, yet ahead of this vintage paintings, it have been subjected to little clinical learn. American views on demise appear surprisingly paradoxical—the brutal truth of dying is faced day-by-day in our newspapers but american citizens are unwilling to speak overtly in regards to the technique of demise itself. Awareness of demise, using a hugely unique thought of wisdom, examines the loss of life sufferer and people approximately him in social interplay, it provides us a language and instruments of study for knowing who is familiar with what approximately demise, lower than what situations, and what distinction it makes.
The authors use their finely exact observations to advance theoretical constructs that might be of use in lots of different interactions and events. Awareness of demise was the 1st learn of death in hospitals, and has confirmed an invaluable guide for chaplains, social staff, nurses, and medical professionals in confronting the various moral and private difficulties that come up within the demise state of affairs. Now on hand in paperback, it really is destined to arrive new audiences drawn to this key a part of all life.
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Extra resources for Awareness of Dying
A patient expected to die on time, but who suddenly begins to recover slightly or to linger—the short-term reprieve pattern — can cause problems for nurses, family, physicians, and hos pital administrators. Here is an example: one patient who was expected to die within four hours had no money, but needed a special machine during his last days. A private hospital, at which he had been a frequent paying patient for thirty years, agreed to receive him as a charity patient. He did not die immediately but started to linger indefinitely, even to the point where there was some hope that he might live.
However, as noted in Chapter 1, American physicians very infrequently make such announcements. 4 Besides the physician’s word, what else can the patient depend on if he does want to know his fate? If one were to write a set of directives for such a patient it would go as fol lows: Apart from making your physician tell you, listen care fully to what the staff says about you. Listen carefully also to anything the medical or nursing personnel may tell you, obliquely, about your condition; for sometimes they flash cues, perhaps knowingly or perhaps unwittingly, about you.
But in American hospitals, the attending physician is the only one who can legitimately define the patient’s condition, because of his pro fessional expertise and the professional mandate that he be medically responsible for the patient. Ordinarily, only he may tell patients that they are dying. Under extraordinary conditions, nurses tell patients or relatives directly, but this is not the usual practice. 5) Nurses must also correctly assess whether the patient is dying and when he will die. To make those assessments is often no easy matter.
Awareness of Dying by Barney G. Glaser