Date of Award
Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)
Attitude to Death; Quality of Life; Terminal Care
Purpose: To enable clients in end-of-life care (EOLC ) the opportunity to continue engaging in meaningful activities throughout their remaining days to increase QoL and experience a "good death."
Methods: To complete our Scholarly Project we conducted a literature review using PubMed, CINAHL, OTsearch, and AOTA publications search engines. We also conducted an informal information session with local hospice staff and from this information we chose model/theory to guide product development.
Results: Upon completion of the literature review, we found the following problems existed in regard to utilization of Occupational Therapy in end-of-life care setting; 1) hospice care team members and clients lack knowledge of OT, 2) Volume of hospice clientele is increasing, 3) Clients and caregivers are not receiving the needed services, and 4) There is limited funding for OT services in hospice care. In order to address these problems a toolkit was created. This toolkit has four components including educational materials for both the medical professionals and the clients/caregivers; recommended assessments and evaluations which have been shown to be effective within the EOLC setting; recommended grant funding sources to provide initial funding for OT within EOLC; and an additional resources section with information related to utilization of OT services within EOLC. The intention of the toolkit is to provide an easy to use guide for Occupational Therapists who wish to become an active end-of-life care team member.
Conclusion: Increasing utilization of Occupational Therapy in End-of-Life settings has been shown to empower client/family, promote a "good death," decrease costs, provide a preventative approach to care in order to decrease secondary injuries and can serve as a means to balance utilization of team members by acting as a liaison between the client and the end-of-life care team. Having a toolkit available for Occupational Therapists who wish to be more active in the end-of-life care setting can provide a means for increasing referrals and utilization of OT services in order to empower the client.
Johnson, Emily and Landsem, Sarah, "Occupational Therapy for Client Empowerment in End-of-Life Care" (2009). Occupational Therapy Capstones. 240.