Four Books Offer Advice, Solace to Seriously Ill

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Karen Utterback By Karen Utterback 
Former Vice President, Product Marketing and Strategy, McKesson (Retired)

Hospice Agency Books to Read

People are the differentiating factor in most healthcare settings, but nowhere does the “power of the personal” come into play than the hospice industry. Providing physical, emotional and often spiritual support to terminal patients and their families takes dedicated, devoted individuals.

That makes hiring staff and training volunteers particularly important for a hospice agency, because caregivers must be able to listen closely and offer, not only empathy, but also concrete advice on often fast-changing situations.

There are a number of wonderful resources where you can find important information and resources for your caregivers, but today we’ll focus on books that can be found at the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization Marketplace.

With the help of Rhonda Perrin Oakes, RN, CHPN, McKesson’s resident hospice expert, we’ve compiled four books available at NHPCO’s Marketplace that offer valued advice for professional, volunteer and civilian caregivers.

Handbook for Mortals: Guidance for People Facing Serious Illness
By Joanne Lynn and Joan Harrold
This book offers practical advice about what to expect toward the end of life so readers can have greater confidence about how to make this time a period of growth, comfort and reflection.

Choice: Simple Answers to Difficult Healthcare Questions
By Sheila Enders
This easy-to-read guide offers strategies for managing a lifetime of healthcare choices. It is written without jargon and features lively, engaging graphics. This is a recommended reference that will be invaluable in advocating for and with patients and clients, as well as for personal use.

Choices at the End of Life: Finding Out What Your Parents Want Before It’s Too Late
By Linda Norlander and Kerstin McSteen
This book helps readers develop a living will or advance directive, avoid family strife over medical decisions and find a low-key way to talk with parents about end-of-life preferences before those decisions have to be made in haste.

People Planning Ahead
By Leigh Ann Creany Kingsbury
This is described as “nuts and bolts” manual focused on planning healthcare and end-of-life care aimed at patients with intellectual disabilities facing terminal or chronic health conditions.

Though end-of-life issues and decisions are incredibly difficult, these four books can help hospice agency healthcare workers, their patients and patients’ families cope with the situations they face.

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