Moments that Matter: Cases in Ethical Eldercare: A Guide for Family Members

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iUniverse, Mar 11, 2010 - Health & Fitness - 200 pages
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“I want to do the right thing. She was a wonderful mother, and deserves only that.”

This common refrain comes from children of aged, ill parents. Families struggle with decisions, confronting the inevitable while providing parents with love and care. Modern medicine often offers endless treatments—but illnesses eventually progress and the focus must ultimately shift to end-of-life care. Moments that Matter: Cases in Ethical Eldercare reflects Dr. Gordon’s extensive experience with families struggling with poignant and difficult decisions.

“Caring effectively and lovingly for the elders in our families can present daunting dilemmas. Moments that Matter: Cases in Ethical Eldercare provides invaluable information and insights for all concerned. Dr. Michael Gordon has given us a timely and timeless gift with this book.”
—Steven R. Sabat, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology, Georgetown University

“Dr. Gordon has written a thoughtful and indispensible guide to aid families facing difficult choices in caring for aging family members. There is no other single resource that so deftly and expertly draws together the necessary elements to navigate this phase of the life course.”
—Ross Upshur, M.D., Director, Joint Centre for Bioethics, University of Toronto

“Drawing on a rich supply of vignettes from his vast clinical experience, Dr. Michael Gordon brings good advice and trenchant analysis to families caring for older relatives. Moments that Matter: Cases in Ethical Eldercare is informative, practical, and compassionate—everything that struggling caregivers need.”
—Muriel R. Gillick, M.D., Professor of Population Medicine, Harvard Medical School

 

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Contents

1 The Nature of Aging and the Health Care System
1
Maintaining the Fabric of Caring and Love
6
3 Concepts of Medical Ethics and How They Relate to Aging
12
The Individual and the Surrogate Decision Maker
42
5 TruthTelling as an Example of Balancing Benefits and Harms
49
It Isnt Easy to Be Old and Sick
55
When Goals Conflict
60
8 The Many Players in Ethics and Care
63
Reality and Myth
107
14 LongTerm Care
114
15 EndofLife Care Decisions
126
Achieving the Goals of Comfort and Dignity
136
17 Ethical Perspectives of Health Care Professionals
143
18 The Final Journey
150
Resources
157
Advance Care Planning
161

9 Is Quality of Life Everything? Secular and Religious Views
66
10 Issues in Feeding and Drinking
78
Finding a Balance Between Giving and Receiving Care
92
12 Challenges Posed by the Acute Hospital System
97
About the Author
171
Index
173
Copyright

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