Presents a view of hospice care through the eyes of a long-term hospice nurse. This title includes stories which are accompanied by discussion of end-of-life issues that arise among the families hospice nurse has served. It is useful for health care and social worker and layperson alike.
Table of Contents
Hospice Is: The authors offer eight elements that define hospice
Forward by Rabbi Dr. Earl A. Grollman
Preface by Ira Byock, M.D.
Chapter 1: All Kinds of Love: The story of Aggie and her brother speaks to the universal need for acceptance, compassion and love. Her dying is transformed into self-realization by the hospice team that supports them. Notes: Discussion of roles and qualities of hospice team members; of the holistic perspective in care.
Chapter 2: The Intimate Hour: Minnie lives out her last months with her daughter's family. We see their stresses, but in their conflicts, coping and rewards, we feel them grow strong. Notes: Discussion of home care; of institutional care.
Chapter 3: Only God Knows When: The story of Heather, a first-grader dying of leukemia, tells of the heroic struggle for her life and the professionals who participated in it. It reveals the effects of her illness and death on her family, and the value of the bereavement program hospice provided them. Notes: Discussion of grieving; of bereavement.
Chapter 4; The Gift of Choice: Joseph, a businessman dying of pancreatic cancer, decides to end it all in suicide. The hospice nurse, Janice listens; his wife responds from her gut, helping him in a surprising way. Notes: Discussion of assisted suicide, withholding treatment, advance directives, Do Not Resuscitate orders.
Chapter 5: What's best for Me: Henrietta's husband tries by his will to keep her alive--at all costs, and without regard for her feelings. Through hospice, she finds the courage to be herself, dying at least in part on her own terms. Notes: Discussion of dignity in dying; of patient control.
Chapter 6: Cocktails and Images: William suffers intractable pain from prostrate cancer: Janice, his nurse fights to find relief for him and his wife through innovations in pain control--hypnosis and imaging. Notes: Discussion of pain control.
Chapter 7: The Ties that Bind: Sandy is diagnosed with AIDS. We see a flashback to his tell-all talk with his parents, then follow his course through illness and dying. Humor; pathos, religious doubts, conflicts and resolution all comprise his story. Notes: Discussion of AIDS care; of spiritual care; of humor.
Chapter 8: Letters and a Diary: The feelings and growth of a mother and her daughters are chronicled in their writings as their father's life draws to a close. The hospice team supports and models their open communication. Notes: Discussion of a "good death"--a better way to die.
Chapter 9: Beginnings and Reflections: Jaffe explores her life for the reasons she dedicated herself to hospice nursing, and looking back, describes the milestones of her growth in that role.
Appendix: Perspective: A critique of success and shortcomings in hospice, as well as suggestions for improving its programs.
Bibliography of Additional Readings