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Care at the Close of Life: Evidence and Experience
Stephen J. McPhee, Margaret A. Winker, Michael W. Rabow, Steven Z. Pantilat, Amy J. Markowitz
Part D Other Patient Management Issues
Chapter 21. Sudden Traumatic Death in Children: “We Did Everything, But Your Child Didn’t Survive”
Robert D. Truog, MD, Grace H. Christ, DSW, David M. Browning, MSW, Elaine C. Meyer, PhD, RN

Topics Discussed: death, sudden, traumatic death

Excerpt: "Confronting the death of a child can create profound feelings of uncertainty, powerlessness, and hopelessness in clinical staff. Debriefings offer an opportunity to counter demoralization, provide validation of effective work, and identify areas for improvement. In this case, debriefings were wisely understood to be a critical component of care, despite the short length of Lindy's admission. Informal and formal debriefings can help promote a sense of self-efficacy, which has been shown to have a powerful mediational role in maintaining human well-being and functioning in the face of such traumatic experiences.70 In this context, debriefings aim to restore a sense of meaning and purpose in clinicians' lives by affirming that the actions they took were helpful, worthwhile, and contributed positively to the well-being of the child, the family, and the team...."
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