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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Lisa Stepp, PhD, RN, APN, AOCN, CRNH (Private Practice)
Description: The Facing Death Series lends particular attention to the developing field of palliative care as viewed by practitioners, planners, and policy analysts. This volume, third in the series, focuses on death, dying, end-of-life care, and bereavement.
Purpose: The authors seek to further extend our understanding of the palliative care concepts, as well as to provoke further discussions regarding current dilemmas and trends in this field. This text also recognizes that a critical and probing type of orientation is necessary in the development process of a specialty. Overall, the authors are able to achieve this purpose by causing readers to focus their attention on questions that, to date, have no answers.
Audience: According to the authors, this text is written for students of death, dying, and bereavement, and for anyone with an involvement in palliative care research, service delivery, or policy making. This target audience is too broad for the scope of information actually delivered. More realistically, this text will have the greatest benefit for those involved in research and policy making. The authors are knowledgeable in the sociological aspects of life and death; however, their practice is based in England, which is sociologically quite different from that here in the United States.
Features: This volume covers societal identifications of death as well as the development, policies, and future trends of palliative care. The authors are able to give a global perspective of important concepts and theories incorporated in palliative care.
Assessment: The importance of understanding our culture's perception of death, dying, and palliative care cannot be overestimated. A text that focuses on the United States cultural norms would be more useful.