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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Christopher J Graver, PhD, ABPP-CN(Madigan Healthcare System)
Description: The world's population is steadily aging and the geriatric sector is growing. There is increased recognition of the unique psychological challenges facing this population, as this second edition indicates in its updates and expansion.
Purpose: The purpose of this book is to provide information about the research and clinical practice regarding psychological problems, assessment issues, and service contexts of older individuals.
Audience: It is intended for clinicians and researchers in psychology, psychiatry, gerontology, and other related fields. The editors represent many years of clinical and scholarly work in this area and they have recruited experts from the United Kingdom, United States, and Australia.
Features: The book covers a broad range of topics, from normal aging to dementia to suicide in older individuals. Related topics include stroke, Parkinson's disease, psychosis, depression, and sleep disturbance. The chapters are well researched, scientifically rooted, and current. The book presents balanced viewpoints and notes both overlap (referring the reader to more detailed sections in other chapters) and omissions. In the latter case, outstanding recommendations are made for further reading on the topic. The valuable middle section discusses different contexts where psychologists provide care. In addition to discussing the care for patients in these settings (e.g., residences or primary care), these chapters also address issues such as job satisfaction and staff burnout. Caregiver stress is also covered later in the book. Some chapters, however, are almost too cursory to be of any value (e.g., the chapter on neuropsychological assessment and capacity and consent). There are sufficient figures and illustrations, and readers will find helpful tables summarizing the information throughout the book. The references are current and the index is extensive.
Assessment: This is a solid book on the clinical psychology of aging. The second edition is updated and improved with a broad range of topics. Although readers will find many benefits in this book, they should expect only to have their appetite whetted by the perfunctory coverage of many topics and prepare themselves to follow the references for knowledge satiation. Although the suggested readings and references are good, the need to seek secondary sources seems unreasonable after spending over $200 for this book.