Handbook for Mortals: Guidance for People Facing Serious Illness (1st Edition)

About the Course:

Written for caregivers as well as the dying, Handbook for Mortals is an excellent resource for anyone facing the end of life. Authors Joanne Lynn, M.D., and Joan Harrold, M.D., offer sensitive and practical advice for the ambiguous final stage of a life-threatening illness—when hope for a recovery is waning and the patient and family members are turning toward a different horizon, that of accepting and supporting an imminent death. For the most part, the authors focus on physical concerns such as pain management, artificial feeding, and an especially poignant passage about assisted suicide.

Because of their backgrounds, the authors are also comfortable discussing the emotional complexities of dying, such as offering advice on giving and receiving forgiveness and resolving conflicts in close relationships. The handbook offers many sidebars, including “Words to Try” when speaking with a sick person: instead of saying, “Dad, you are going to be just fine,” the authors suggest saying, “Dad, are there some things that worry you?” Proceeds from the sale of the book support Americans for Better Care of the Dying, a national charitable organization devoted to improving care for the last stage of life.

Author

Joan Harrold, M.D., and Joanne Lynn Joanne Lynn, M.D.

About the Author:

Joanne Lyn, M.D. is director of the RAND Center to Improve Care of the Dying and President of Americans for Better Care of the Dying. Joan Harrold, M.D., is Medical Director for the Hospice of Lancaster County.

Course Objectives:

  1. to describe decisions that people who are terminally ill must face

  2. to list resources that will be helpful to those who are terminally ill

  3. to explain ways to manage symptoms of various specific diseases

  4. to describe clinical skills that can be helpful to those who are terminally ill

  5. to define key terms for End of Life Care

Exam Questions

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