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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

An existential-phenomenological exploration of an end-of-life doula
by Trzeciak-Kerr, M. M., Ph.D., Fielding Graduate University, 2016, 181; 10090334
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this study was to record and analyze how an end-of-life (EOL) doula and EOL doula care-recipient’s [doulee’s] family members perceive and describe their personal doula lived experiences during their participation in an EOL doula program. Additionally, it sought to gain clarity on how an EOL doula can augment current palliative and hospice care services to improve and more accurately meet the needs and wants identified by the EOL doulees as reported by the EOL doulee’s family members and the EOL doulas that accompanied them. To accomplish this, 15 co-researchers, 11 EOL doulas and 4 doulee family members, from JFCS, Inc. were interviewed wherein they shared their personal doula lived experiences.

The interviews were analyzed through existential-phenomenological thematic analysis and generated 10 major themes: (a) Just being there, being present, and spending time; (b) No one should die alone; (c) It is important to be a good listener; (d) An EOL doula can work together with hospice because his or her role is different; (e) An EOL doula can provide spiritual support; (f) An EOL doula needs to have certain personality traits; (g) An EOL doula remains open to engage in activities wanted or needed by the EOL doulee; (h) An EOL doula needs to be aware of his or her comfort level with the different phases of dying; (i) An EOL doula can also provide support to the EOL doulee’s family and loved ones; and (j) The EOL doula program has comprehensive and ongoing trainings and supervision for all EOL doulas.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Drob, Sanford L.
Commitee: Christensen, Misty, Doka, Kenneth J., Nelson, Annabelle L.
School: Fielding Graduate University
Department: Psychology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-B 77/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Aging, Clinical psychology
Keywords: Co-researchers, Doula, End-of-life, Existential, Phenomenological
Publication Number: 10090334
ISBN: 978-1-339-59658-7
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