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The Patient's Wish to Die
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The Patient's Wish to Die: Research, Ethics, and Palliative Care

Christoph Rehmann-Sutter, Heike Gudat, and Kathrin Ohnsorge

Abstract

Despite having the best palliative care, some patients develop a wish to die. The wish to die under these circumstances need not be symptomatic of suboptimal care. However, for those involved in their care, being confronted with a patient who expresses such a wish can be morally, intellectually, and emotionally challenging. This book explores the subjective experience and needs of patients who hold such wishes, the meanings these wishes may have for them, and some of the moral and practical challenges presented by caring for these patients. The book assembles chapters by some of the most impor ... More

Keywords: wish to die, palliative care, assisted dying, autonomy, spirituality, communication, patients’ narratives

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780198713982
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198713982.001.0001

Authors

Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Christoph Rehmann-Sutter, editor
Professor of Theory and Ethics in the Biosciences, Institute for the History of Medicine and Science Studies, Lübeck, Germany

Heike Gudat, editor
Head of the hospital for palliative care, Hospiz im Park, Hospital for Palliative Care, Arlesheim, Switzerland

Kathrin Ohnsorge, editor
Researcher at the hospital for palliative care, Hospiz im Park, Hospital for Palliative Care, Arlesheim, Switzerland

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Contents

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Part I Introduction

Chapter 1 Why it is important to know about patients’ wishes to die

Christoph Rehmann-Sutter, Heike Gudat, and Kathrin Ohnsorge

Part II Research

Chapter 7 The desire for hastened death in patients in palliative care

Rinat Nissim, Christopher Lo, and Gary Rodin

Chapter 11 Dialogue intermezzo: I

Christoph Rehmann-Sutter, Heike Gudat, and Kathrin Ohnsorge

Part III Ethics

Chapter 16 Dialogue intermezzo: II

Christoph Rehmann-Sutter, Heike Gudat, and Kathrin Ohnsorge

Part IV Practice

Chapter 19 Communication of wishes to die

Heike Gudat, Christoph Rehmann-Sutter, and Kathrin Ohnsorge

Chapter 21 What does the wish to hasten death mean for the palliative patient? Clinical implications

Cristina Monforte-Royo, Albert Balaguer, and Christian Villavicencio-Chávez

Part V Conclusion

Chapter 22 Concluding dialogue

Christoph Rehmann-Sutter, Heike Gudat, and Kathrin Ohnsorge