- Course Number:
- GRN 233
- Course Title:
- Supporting End of Life
- Credit Hours:
- Lecture Hours:
- Lecture/Lab Hours:
- Lab Hours:
- Special Fee:
Course DescriptionProvides health care workers, caregivers, religious and spiritual counselors, social workers, fiduciaries, and family members the knowledge and skills to support the end of life process with dying persons and their families. Explores the physical, emotional, spiritual, legal, and financial aspects of dying, as well as grief and bereavement. Audit available.
Addendum to Course Description
Required for the Gerontology: End of Life Care Certificate.
Intended Outcomes for the course
Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:
1. Guide dying persons and their families through end-of-life planning and decision making, in coordination with other
professionals and support systems
2. Apply palliative care measures to persons approaching the end of life
3. Support the emotional, spiritual and social needs of persons approaching the end of life and their families.
4. Provide grief support to dying persons and their families pre- and post-death.
Course Activities and Design
• Lecture, discussion, and readings on key concepts, issues, and skills
• Written, oral, art, or collaborative assignments designed to address knowledge of course content, explore personal beliefs, and prepare
students for supporting diverse end-of-life scenarios
Outcome Assessment Strategies
1) A variety of assignments will be used to facilitate skills and knowledge acquisition (discussion boards, case studies, interviews, etc.)
2) Assessments in the form of quizzes, essays and other types of objective tests may be used
3) A peer-reviewed and shared capstone project will demonstrate knowledge of course concepts and skills to address issues and
concerns of dying persons and families in diverse cultures, locations, and circumstances
Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)
*All topics will address patient, family, and caregiver perspectives
Learning Module 1: Dialogue about Death Knowledge: Explore personal beliefs, meanings, and comfort level related to end of life issues. Understand the social culture of death and dying in the U.S. and how to discuss death and dying with others
Skills: Communicate effectively with persons who are dying and their family members about the end of life
Learning Module 2: Pain Assessment and Palliative Care Knowledge: Understand signs and stages of dying (physical, emotional, spiritual), non-verbal signs of pain, and palliative care options Skills: Assess pain of dying persons with both communicative and non-communicative conditions and meet palliative care needs
Learning Module 3: Religion, Spirituality and Culture
Knowledge: Understand diverse religious, spiritual, and cultural beliefs about death, what happens after death, and how religious beliefs and culture impact the dying person, family, and caregivers Skills: Support the religious/spiritual needs of persons approaching the end of life and their family members.
Learning Module 4: Location of Death Knowledge: Analyze the different physical locations of death, such as hospice, home, facilities, and understand how patients and families are emotionally affected by locations of death Skills: Guide dying person and family member through options for different locations of death and the hierarchies of care in each location, and address issues the dying person and family members might face in each location. Communicate with caregivers, staff, and support systems within each location of death
Learning Module 5: Ethical issues and End-of-life Decision-Making
Knowledge: Understand ethical and legal issues surrounding end of life, such as DNR orders, health care proxies, terminal sedation, and aid-in-dying, and how these affect patients and families. Understand how hospital ethics boards work.
Skills: Guide dying person and family through end of life decision making
Learning Module 6: Grief and Bereavement
Knowledge: Examine patient, family, and caregiver grief, cross-cultural and religious aspects of grief and bereavement, grief following different types of death (terminal illness, suicide, aid in dying, sudden death, violent death), and grief theories
Skills: Provide grief support for the dying person and family pre- and post-death
Learning Module 7: Funerals and Rituals Knowledge: Differentiate options for body disposition, funerals/celebrations of life, and rituals
Skills: Guide dying person and family members through making funeral arrangements and planning rituals to honor their loved one
Learning Module 8: The Cost of Dying Knowledge: Understand financial aspects of end-of-life care and the emotional impact on families
Skills: Guide family members through the financial aspects of end of-life care, in coordination with their fiduciaries and financial
Learning Module 9: Planning and Preparing for Death Knowledge: Understand options for the dying person to achieve a good death.
Skills: Guide the dying person and family through options to personalize their death, address final wishes, and improve the quality
of life preceding and at the time of death. }
Learning Module 10: Final Project/Group Critique Knowledge: Demonstrate knowledge of course concepts and skills through a capstone project and group critique of peers projects Skills: Provide support throughout the end of life process with the dying person and family. Anticipate and address issues and concerns of dying persons and families in diverse cultures, locations, and circumstances