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Palliative medicine: Communication to promote life near the end of life 

Palliative medicine: Communication to promote life near the end of life

Chapter:
Palliative medicine: Communication to promote life near the end of life
Author(s):

Nicola Pease

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198736134.003.0049
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date: 20 July 2017

Life near the end of life will mean different things to different people. For some patients, the priority may be length of life, but for many patients ‘life’ may mean something completely different; for example, the ability to put their affairs in order, plan a ‘healthy death’, or to achieve something important which has resonance specifically to them. Patients will have highly individual goals and priorities. Without information about their condition, their treatment options and possible outcomes, patients cannot make informed choices/decisions about how/where they might want to live in the last phase of their lives. The following chapter looks at prognostication tools and describes a ‘toolkit’ applicable to any healthcare setting, to facilitate and promote communication when patients are thought to be nearing the end of life. Within the chapter there are examples of the toolkit in action.

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