Care at the moment of death

Care at the moment of death


Caring for an individual and their family at the moment of death requires that the nurse be attentive to the patient’s needs and wishes whilst also being sensitive to the needs of the family.

Recognising and acknowledging death

Recognising and acknowledging that a person is beginning to die is important so that care can be tailored to the specific needs of the individual. Failure to recognise and respond appropriately to the needs of the dying person can lead to poor care planning which will ultimately lead to sub-optimal care of the dying person and their family as a result of:

  • Inappropriate and unnecessary interventions continuing
  • Missed opportunities to engage meaningfully with the patient and their family
  • Staff confusion and uncertainty regarding whether or not the dying process has begun

Recognising and acknowledging imminent death leads to two main goals of care:

  1. Maximising comfort for the patient ensuring that the patient is pain free and that other symptoms are assessed and managed appropriately
  2. Communicating openly with the patient and their family in order to allay fears and ensure that the patient, where possible, and the family are aware of what to expect as end of life approaches and when death occurs

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Aug 29, 2017 | Posted by in NURSING | Comments Off on Care at the moment of death

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