Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Terminal care in old age psychiatry: a survey of professionals' attitudes and approaches

  • Josephine Anne Richards (a1) and James Lindesay (a2)
Extract

Few clinical decisions are more difficult than whether or not to withhold treatment from patients who are unable to make this choice for themselves. This is because they bring into conflict a number of principles central to clinical practice, such as the duty to save life, the duty to relieve suffering, and the duty to heed patients' wishes. In North America, advance directives (‘living wills’) from patients, made when they are fully competent, have achieved considerable popularity in recent years as a possible way out of these dilemmas (La Puma et al, 1991; Molloy et al, 1991); unfortunately, it is by no means clear whether these can in fact provide a workable solution to the problem of treating incompetent patients (Hope, 1992). For the time being, decisions about withholding treatment will continue to be made by the health professionals immediately involved at the time, often junior staff with little experience or training, and there is a need for a professional consensus as to the factors that should be properly taken into consideration. This study investigates the current attitudes and approaches of psychiatrists and psychiatric nurses in one health district to this problem. It examines the criteria used, and the conditions under which decisions about administering or withholding treatments are being made.

    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      Terminal care in old age psychiatry: a survey of professionals' attitudes and approaches
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      Terminal care in old age psychiatry: a survey of professionals' attitudes and approaches
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      Terminal care in old age psychiatry: a survey of professionals' attitudes and approaches
      Available formats
      ×
Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
References
Hide All
Black, D. & Jolley, D. (1990) Slow euthanasia? The deaths of psychogeriatric patients. British Medical Journal, 300, 13211323.
Hope, T. (1992) Advance directives about medical treatment. British Medical Journal, 304, 398.
La Puma, J., Orentlicher, D. & Moss, R. J. (1991) Advance directives on admission. Journal of the American Medical Association, 266, 402405.
Molloy, D. W., Clarnette, R. M., Braun, E. A., Eismann, M. R. & Sneidermann, B. (1991) Decision making in the incompetent elderly: “The daughter from California syndrome”. Journal of the American Geriatrics' Society, 39, 396399.
Oppenheimer, C. (1991) Ethics and the psychiatry of old age. In Psychiatry in the Elderly (eds. Jacoby, R. and Oppenheimer, C.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 1 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 5 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 2nd January 2018 - 25th June 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Terminal care in old age psychiatry: a survey of professionals' attitudes and approaches

  • Josephine Anne Richards (a1) and James Lindesay (a2)
Submit a response

eLetters

No eLetters have been published for this article.

×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *