To provide care at the terminal phase for a person with a life-limiting condition, it is important to understand that experiences are different for everyone and individual goals of care determines the approach.
Topic 6: Terminal care and bereavement support describes how to recognise when someone is dying and developing a plan of care for this phase based on a revised assessment of their preferences and care needs. For the purpose of this resource, the terminal phase will be the last 48 hours of life.
Aims & Objectives
After completing this topic, you should be able to:
- recognise the terminal phase of a life-limiting condition
- identify person-centred goals of care in the terminal phase of a life-limiting condition
- outline cultural, ethical and legal considerations in the terminal phase of a life-limiting condition
- develop an understanding of providing care after death
- identify strategies for providing support to bereaved families and carers.
describe the signs and symptoms commonly experienced in the terminal phase of a life-limiting condition
identify validated assessment tools used in the terminal phase.
Recognising dying – signs and symptoms
Assessment in the terminal phase
identify strategies to understand preferences in the terminal phase
outline ethical and legal considerations in the terminal phase of a life-limiting condition.
Preferences in the terminal phase
Documenting preferences – care planning
– End of life care pathways
Ethical issues in the terminal phase
– Withholding and withdrawing treatment
– Myths about morphine
– Decision making conflicts
outline the legal and organisational requirements after a person dies
demonstrate care of the person after death which reflects respect and is culturally appropriate.
– legal and organisational requirements
– Who needs to be notified
– Patient confidentiality
– Role of coroner – autopsy
Care of the person
– Culturally appropriate care
– Preparing the body
Case study – Support for Amy’s family at the end-of-life
describe resources available to support individuals and families requiring grief and bereavement support.
Culturally appropriate information and resources
Referral to pastoral care or social work