Media Watch 539

Attached is the current issue of Media Watch (#539).


Of particular Interest:

Providing high-quality care at the end of life: The role of education and guidance

BRITISH JOURNAL OF NURSING | Online – 10 November 2017 – Palliative care (PC) in the U.K. has been ranked as the best in the world.1 So where did PC go so wrong that a 168-page document is required to inform staff how to care for dying patients if it has been going so well for so long? Those nearing the end of their life deserve to be given optimum care, attention, compassion and consideration, but this is not always the case. The Liverpool Care Pathway was a tool originally devised to help health professionals provide high-quality end-of-life care (EoLC) to people in the final phase of life.2 This tool, when used in the correct way, could provide the “gold standard” of EoLC for patients. However, a national review found that rather than a tick-box exercise, care of the dying should be centred around individualised care planning for the dying patient, as highlighted in ... ‘One Chance to Get It Right.’3 Care of the dying is a complex skill that requires nurses to provide some of the most challenging care, and for which many nurses have received little or no training. The implementation of this guidance into practice will require thoughtful change management, abandoning an old way of working in order to ensure excellence and high-quality care for patients nearing the end of life.

     1.   ‘2015 Quality of Death Index: Ranking Palliative Care Across the World,’ The Economist Intelligence Unit (London, U.K.), October 2015. Commissioned by the Lien Foundation of Singapore [Noted in the 12 October 2015 issue of Media Watch (#431, p.6)] 

      2.   ‘Review of Liverpool Care Pathway for Dying Patients,’ Department of Health, July 2013. [Noted in the 22 July 2013 issue of Media Watch (#315, p.6)] 

     3.   One Chance to Get it Right: Improving People’s Experience of Care in the Last Few Days and Hours of Life,’ Leadership Alliance for the Care of Dying People, June 2014. [Noted in the 30 June 2014 issue of Media Watch (#364, p.7)] 


One teacher’s experiences: Responding to death through language

ENGLISH JOURNAL, 2017;107(2):41-46. A survey by the American Federation of Teachers and New York Life Foundation found that “nearly 7 in 10 teachers reported having at least one grieving student currently in their classrooms.” However, 93% of classroom teachers said they have “never received bereavement training,” only 1% received training as part of their coursework in college, and just 3% said their school or district offers it. That’s significant, since another study found that one in 20 children will lose a parent by age 16, and a majority of children will experience a significant loss before they complete high school. These statistics support the idea that it’s our responsibility as teachers to prepare ourselves to deal with death in the classroom. If you teach long enough, you’ll likely have many experiences with death. Do an Internet search for anything similar to “death in the classroom” and you’ll find resources for helping students deal with the death of everyone from a pet to a parent. The challenge is how to apply all of the advice to meet students’ needs in specific circumstances. As important, I believe that English teachers have the unique opportunity to respond appropriately because of our understanding of context and our grounding in writing, reading, speaking, and communication.