Peaceful Dying: The Step-By-Step Guide to Preserving Your Dignity, Your Choice, and Your Inner Peace at the End of Life

Daniel R. Tobin, Author, With *, Author, Karen Lindsey, With Da Capo Press $15 (220p) ISBN 978-0-7382-0034-7
When he was in medical school, Tobin recognized a significant deficiency in modern medicine regarding what he somewhat demurely terms ""end-of-life situations."" He reports, ""To the physicians and the staff, death was seen as a defeat... a personal failure."" Worse, while he observed doctors ""fighting the dying process to the bitter end,"" patients died ""in moderate to severe pain and... living wills [were] often ignored."" Tobin is against suicide, assisted or otherwise, and offers his program of ""palliative, comfort-based care"" as an alternative. Whether the dying process is experienced in a hospital, nursing home, hospice or home, Tobin's ""FairCare Health System,"" which he developed at the VA Hospital in Albany, N.Y., addresses the specific needs of the dying: pain management, psychological and spiritual counseling and assistance with such practical matters as writing a living will and appointing a medical proxy. Tobin delineates six stages of dying: ""shock, grasping, grief, letting go, healing, and serenity."" He then breaks down those stages to show readers 26 steps they can take to make the process of dying easier, including taking control of choices, facing fears, communicating with doctors and loved ones and planning a funeral. Suggesting that patients take back the dying process in the same manner that women have changed birthing practices, Tobin offers compassion, complete information and sound advice that will be of great use to the terminally ill, their loved ones and their health care providers. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/28/1970
Release date: 01/01/1968
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