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End-of-life care in the home: a relative’s critical reflection
  1. Wendy Marina Walker, Lecturer in Nursing
  1. Wendy Marina Walker, Lecturer in Nursing, University of Birmingham, Birmingham. Email: w.m.walker{at}


The aim of this article is to contribute to the understanding of end-of-life care in the home for a patient diagnosed with congestive heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The author wrote the article from the perspective of being a daughter, a carer and a professional nurse. No amount of knowledge, skill or professional experience can prepare a person for the death of a parent. The author’s key objective was to engage in a cathartic exercise that allowed for personal disclosure of thoughts and feelings surrounding the challenging, yet privileged role of caring for her mother who expressed and fulfilled the desire to live and die at home. The practical knowledge that emerged is intended to help policy makers and caregivers to: recognise good practice; identify areas for change; and to establish priorities for future development aimed at improving the relatives’ situation in relation to end-of-life care. Conflicts of interest: none

  • Chronic illness
  • Dying and death
  • Primary care
  • Reflective practice
  • Relatives

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