Living with death and dying
Living with death and dying

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Living with death and dying

1.4.9 Professional help

Vic’s last few weeks were spent in a state of increasing distrust of the ward staff, since there was never any attempt to open a dialogue from either side. The staff appeared to misinterpret Vic’s silence, and without giving Vic the opportunity to talk, were left having to guess at his wishes.

Li seemed to be able to manage her own treatment in her own way, choosing to combine two systems of medicine. She did, however, have to be assertive with the nursing home staff who were reluctant to accommodate this request. When it was clear that Li was dying the staff tried very hard to manage her death according to her wishes and, as many of the testers’ comments highlight, were successful in that attempt.

Andrew had secured his hopes on a medical cure and was disappointed, but the professional support was always present and home care support enabled him to spend some time at home, albeit very short.

Meg was not always satisfied with the service she received from her GPs and was often left feeling vulnerable because of her lack of confidence in them. There is a particular tension for professionals when patients decide to withdraw from curative treatments, and Meg’s guilt might have been reduced if she had been given more opportunity to discuss this.

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