1st Edition

Towards Death with Dignity Caring for Dying People

By Sylvia Poss Copyright 1981
    160 Pages
    by Routledge

    160 Pages
    by Routledge

    The explosion of literature on the once taboo topic of death and dying in the late 1970s had tended to pass the professional social worker by. Originally published in 1981, it was to fill this important gap that Towards Death with Dignity was written.

    Not since Kubler-Ross’s now classic On Death and Dying has a book in the field of terminal care been informed by so much first-hand experience, and so much case material, allowing the caregiver to learn from the dying person himself how best to help him towards a dignified death.

    Sylvia Poss’s sensitive elucidation of what the dying person must do for himself in order to master his terminal crisis was welcomed as a major contribution to psychosocial knowledge at the time. Having outlined the dying person’s side of the crisis, she turns to the perspective of those who hope to help him towards death – other patients, nurses, doctors, paramedical staff and social workers, chaplains, volunteers, employers, relatives and friends.

    Towards Death with Dignity focuses on three of social work’s major methods: social casework, community work and teaching. Not only does Sylvia Poss outline what may need to be done by the caregiver, but she also illustrates how; she further outlines how to prepare for social work in the terminal care field and suggests an effective method for teaching terminal care skills. Her book also provided, for the first time, a synthesis of other recent work in the field, to help social workers through what had become a plethora of specialist psychosocial and medical literature.

    Towards Death with Dignity was thus a useful, practical guide, both for laymen and for the many professionals involved in this aspect of the health care field. It will also be valuable for those who are involved personally in moving towards their own death, or are being called upon to be involved in some way in the death of a relative, neighbour or friend.

    Preface.  Acknowledgements.  Part 1 – Approaching Death: The Terminal Crisis  1. Background  2. Adjustment to the Prospect of Death  3. Six Tasks Preparatory to Dying  4. Demands on the Family  Part 2 – The Role of the Caregiver  5. Caring Skills  6. Caring for the Dying Person and His Relatives  7. Working with Significant Others.  Appendix: List of Case Illustrations Appearing in the Text.  Select Bibliography.  Index.


    Sylvia Poss