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Key Concepts in Palliative Care

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Title: Key Concepts in Palliative Care

Authors:  Moyra Baldwin and Jan Woodhouse

Publisher:  SAGE Publications Ltd

Reviewer:  Simon Browes, service manager, Central Nottinghamshire Clinical Services

What was it like?

Like other titles in the “Key Concepts” series, this book provides a succinct introduction to a broad range of important topics in palliative care. Covering diverse matters from funding to symptom management, this easy-to-read handbook provides the important headlines and directs readers to more detailed sources of information and reference.

What were the highlights?

Taking account of the government’s “End of Life Care Strategy”, this book is organised clearly and with a consistent format readers can quickly grasp how to navigate the extensive reference guide. Drawing from a range of experts in the practice, teaching and research of palliative care, the impressive list of contributors is encouraging to those struggling to navigate the theory-practice divide. Each of the fifty “key concepts” provides a snapshot definition of the topic, key points, a discussion of the main debates, links to practice through case histories and suggestions for further reading.

Strengths & weaknesses:

Breadth and brevity means this book is light on the detail. This book is not intended to guide clinical decision-making and readers will need the time and resources to undertake further reading. However for those new to palliative care and those undertaking related study, this is a great overview and extensively researched reading list. It is in need of some updating in light of recent policy and practice issues, such as the Liverpool Care Pathway.

Who should read it?

An excellent companion to those studying palliative care at pre and post-registration levels as well as those new to clinical practice in many disciplines.

Key Concepts in Palliative Care

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