Decision Making near the End of Life provides a comprehensive overview of the recent developments that have impacted decision-making processes within the field of end-of-life care. The most current developments in all aspects of major underlying issues such as public attitudes, the impact of media, bioethics, and legal precedent provide the background information for the text. The authors examine various aspects of end-of-life choices and decision-making, including communication (between and among family, medical personnel, the dying person), advance directives, and the emergence of hospice and palliative care institutions. The book also explores a variety of psychosocial considerations that arise in decision-making, including religion/spirituality, family caregiving, disenfranchised and diverse groups, and the psychological and psychiatric problems that can impact both the dying person and loved ones. Case studies and first-person stories about decision-making, written by professionals in the field, bring a uniquely personal touch to this valuable text.
Table of Contents:
Werth, Blevins, Introduction. Field, How People Die in the United States. Webb, Effects of the Media/Public Attitudes. Cerminara, Legal Overview. Keespies, Preston, Miller, End-of-Life Choices. Chang, The Process of Medical Decision-making. Prevost, Miller, Dying in Institutions. Ditt, Advance Directives. Werth, Psychological/Psychiatric Issues. Wells, Allen, Family/Caregiving. Doka, Religion/Spirituality. Hayslip, Diversity/Disenfranchised/Oppressed Groups. Volicier, Decisions By and For Adults with Questionable Mental Capacity. Kazak, End-of-Life Decisions and Children. Crow, Raye, Personal Stories. Orentlicher, Conclusion.
About the Editors:
James L. Werth, Jr., Ph.D., is Assistant Professor, Counseling Psychology Program, Department of Psychology, and Fellow, Institute for Life-Span Development and Gerontology at The University of Akron. Dr. Werth is also a volunteer psychologist and group co-facilitator at Violetís Cupboard, a support group for gay and bisexual men with HIV/AIDS.
Dean Blevins, MPH, Ph.D., is an Instructor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and a Postdoctoral Fellow, Centers for Mental Healthcare and Outcomes Research, Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System.