Dying is an act of creativity, and we each die as cultural beings. Culture helps us create the meaning death requests of us. However, the dominant culture of the healthcare system views death as a failure of modern medicine, an event of unspeakable terror and taboo. Palliative clinicians must honor each dying person's cultural identity (as well as the person's family), not subject it to the dominant discourse of Western medicine. This article offers practical guidelines for palliative clinicians to do so, as well as a case vignette.
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