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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Lawrence R. LaPalio, MD (Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine)
Description: This book is divided into six chapters with a bibliography and index. The first two chapters provide an introduction to long-term care and develop a theoretical framework concerning the concept of autonomy. The third chapter deals with fundamental geriatric principles. The last three chapters apply long-term care principles of autonomy within a unique phenomenological framework.
Purpose: The purpose is to present a conceptual framework concerning the understanding of autonomy and long-term care. An attempt is then made to press the concept of autonomy into service as a general ethical principle. These concepts are well supported, and the arguments are logical. These objectives are well met.
Audience: The intended audience is researchers, ethicists, and persons interested in the philosophy of ethical principles as they relate to long-term care. The author is a credible authority in ethics but a neophyte in the issues of long-term care.
Features: One of the best features of this book is the excellent bibliography, which is up-to-date and thorough. The index is well organized and easy to use.
Assessment: This book is an excellent work that deals with the ethical and philosophical principles of autonomy in long-term care. It is an intelligent analysis of some of the realities that confront this serious problem in our aging society. This book should be required reading for researchers, ethicists, and philosophers on issues related to the care of the elderly. The book is not practical at the clinical level because the language and arguments are geared for researchers and ethicists and not forpersons who work in long-term care.