The art of letting go: Referral to palliative care and its discontents
Accompanying patients from active treatment towards specialist palliative care is a complex sphere of clinical practice that can be fraught with interpersonal and emotional challenges. While medical specialists are expected to break ‘bad news’ to their patients and ease their transitions to specialist palliative care if required, few have received formal training in such interpersonal complexities. Furthermore, there also often exists clinical ambiguity around whether to continue active treatment vis-à-vis refocusing on quality of life and palliation. In this paper we explore the experiences of twenty Australian medical specialists, focussing on issues such as: dilemmas around when and how to talk about dying and palliation; the art of referral and practices of representation; and, accounts of emotion and subjective influences on referral. The results illustrate how this transitional realm can be embedded in emotions, relationships and the allure of potentially life-prolonging intervention. We argue that the practice of referral should be understood as a relational and contextually-bound process.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 78 (2013)
Issue (Month): C ()
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/315/description#description|
|Order Information:|| Postal: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/supportfaq.cws_home/regional|
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Wallace, Jean Elizabeth & Lemaire, Jane, 2007. "On physician well being--You'll get by with a little help from your friends," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 64(12), pages 2565-2577, June.
- Hibbert, Derek & Hanratty, Barbara & May, Carl & Mair, Frances & Litva, Andrea & Capewell, Simon, 2003. "Negotiating palliative care expertise in the medical world," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 277-288, July.
- Walshe, Catherine & Chew-Graham, Carolyn & Todd, Chris & Caress, Ann, 2008. "What influences referrals within community palliative care services? A qualitative case study," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 137-146, July.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:78:y:2013:i:c:p:9-16. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamier, Wendy)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.