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Meaning-making and managing difficult feelings: providing front-line end-of-life care.

https://arctichealth.org/en/permalink/ahliterature104959
Source
Omega (Westport). 2013-2014;68(1):23-43
Publication Type
Article
Author
L M Funk
S. Waskiewich
K I Stajduhar
Author Affiliation
Department of Sociology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg. Laura.Funk@ad.umanitoba.ca
Source
Omega (Westport). 2013-2014;68(1):23-43
Language
English
Publication Type
Article
Keywords
Adaptation, Psychological
Adult
Attitude to Death
Canada
Female
Grief
Home Health Aides - psychology
Homes for the Aged
Humans
Internal-External Control
Interpersonal Relations
Male
Middle Aged
Professional-Patient Relations
Self Concept
Terminal Care - methods - psychology
Abstract
Managing grief and difficult emotions related to end-of-life (EOL) care is an often under-recognized part of the work of resident care aides (RCAs). In this interpretive analysis we explore the shared and socially constructed ideas that 11 RCAs in 1 Canadian city employ to make sense of death and the provision of EOL care. RCAs spoke of personal challenges involved in witnessing death and experiencing loss, as well as helplessness and frustration when they could not provide quality EOL care. RCAs invoked "consoling refrains" to manage grief, including "such is life," "they are better off," and "they had a full life." To manage guilt and moral distress, RCAs reminded themselves "I did my best" and "I experience rewards." Though these ideas help RCAs, some may need to be reframed through coaching and mentorship, to prevent unintended negative effects on care or the reproduction of ageist beliefs more broadly.
PubMed ID
24547663 View in PubMed
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