Necessary reading for all health care workers, doctors, nurses, social workers and families.
the way we let them die By Selwyn Perry ISBN 1 876331 36 4
This work was made possible by the cooperation, positive attitude and practical help of the doctors, sisters, nurses, clergymen and dying patients in the hospital where I carried out the study. I would like to acknowledge their considerable interest and support.
PREFACE This work is based on a study I carried out in a public hospital. I have written it for doctors, nurses, clergy and for the general public, in the hope that it will fill an urgent need to understand the crisis of dying in hospital. It is a factual account of how the hospital as an institution understands itself, how it functions and provides for the care of dying people. As such it unveils and discloses the most intimate feelings people have about themselves and others when they face death. There has been no attempt to sensationalise the findings of this study but simply to present factual discourse, observations and explanations of how people die in hospital and the implications this has for the professional and lay person. The study took one year to complete with the full support of the hospital concerned and represents interviews with over one hundred and twenty people, doctors, nurses and the dying in hospital.
This discourse is not by any means an exhaustive study of the subject of dying and death but it is an attempt to view the process of dying through the experience of dying people and to show how that experience can be made dignified by those who care for them.
This Revised Version is edited and enlarged to provide a more comprehensive approach to the study of dying and is published along with the companion book The Presence of Death that studies the meaning of death in the whole of life as well as focusing on the experience of grief and grief counsel