Transforming Palliative Care in Nursing Homes: The Social Work Role

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The teacher and gerontological social work scholar Mercedes Bern-Klug joins experts on nursing, law, medicine, sociology, and social work to provide a thorough understanding of nursing home palliative care. Their broad definition of palliative care treats comfort care as appropriate across the illness experience, not just at the end of life.

Because a majority of nursing home residents are older adults facing multiple, advanced chronic conditions, this book is grounded in the provision of palliative care-especially palliative psychosocial care. Yet its practice recommendations can also be applied to other long-term care settings, such as assisted living. The contributors combine scholarship with practical wisdom in each chapter, mixing reviews of scholarly literature with insights gleaned from clinical practice. Chapter topics comply with the eight domains of palliative care developed by the National Consensus Project for Quality Palliative Care. Some focus on care of the resident, while others concern the resident's family. A special section addresses self-care for nursing home staff members, and another discusses nursing home rituals to mark the death of a resident. Bern-Klug concludes with an overview of the factors that will shape the future of palliative care for advanced chronic illness.

Columbia University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Activities, Adaptation, and Aging - Donna Wang

This book certainly fills a niche for a well-deserved population that is often ignored.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231132244
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 2/12/2010
  • Series: End of Life Care: A Series
  • Pages: 376
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Mercedes Bern-Klug is an assistant professor in the School of Social Work at the University of Iowa and a John A. Hartford Geriatric Social Work Faculty Scholar. She is a gerontological social work scholar interested in finding ways to help nursing home residents and their family members cope with emotional issues related to living in a nursing home, and she sees the skills of social workers as a good match for meeting residents' psychosocial needs, especially as the end of life approaches.

Columbia University Press

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Table of Contents

Foreword: Looking Back on the Nursing Home Experience of My Mother, by Msgr. Charles FaheyForeword, by Virginia RichardsonIntroduction, by Mercedes Bern-Klug1. The Need to Extend the Reach of Palliative Psychosocial Care to Nursing Home Residents with Advanced Chronic Illness, by Mercedes Bern-Klug2. The Structure and Process of Advanced Chronic Illness and Palliative Care in Nursing Homes, by Sarah Thompson and Lisa Church3. Paying for Advanced Chronic Illness and Hospice Care in America's Nursing Homes, by Michael J. Klug4. Trends in the Characteristics of Nursing Homes and Residents, by Mercedes Bern-Klug5. Anticipating and Managing Common Medical Challenges Encountered at the End of Life, by Ann Allegre6. Identifying and Addressing the Psychosocial, Social, Spiritual, and Existential Issues Affecting Nursing Home Residents at the End of Life, by Jean C. Munn7. Identifying and Addressing Family Members' Psychosocial, Spiritual, and Existential Issues Related to Having a Loved One Living and Dying in a Nursing Home, by Patricia J. Kolb8. Identifying and Addressing Ethical Issues in Advanced Chronic Illness and at the End of Life, by Charles E. Gessert and Don F. Reynolds9. Final Discharge Planning: Rituals Related to the Death of a Nursing Home Resident, by Peggy Sharr and Mercedes Bern-Klug10. Grief, Self-Care, and Staff-Care: Repeated Loss in the Nursing Home Environment, by Sara Sanders and Patti Homan11. The Future of Palliative Psychosocial Care for Nursing Home Residents with Advanced Chronic Illness, by Mercedes Bern-KlugAppendixIndex

Columbia University Press

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