Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Life And Death In Intensive Care



Life and Death in Intensive Care offers a unique portrait of the surgical intensive care unit (SICU), the place in medical centers and hospitals where patients with the gravest medical conditions—from comas to terminal illness—are treated. Author Joan Cassell employs the concept of "moral economies" to explain the dilemmas that patients, families, and medical staff confront in treatment. Drawing upon her fieldwork conducted in both the United States and New Zealand, Cassell compares the moral outlooks and underlying principles of SICU nurses, residents, intensivists, and surgeons. Using real life examples, Life and Death in Intensive Care clearly presents the logic and values behind the SICU as well as the personalities, procedures, and pressures that characterize every case. Ultimately, Cassell demonstrates the differing systems of values, and the way cultural definitions of medical treatment inform how we treat the critically ill.
"Life and Death in Intensive Care is a valuable addition to our growing understanding of our technology- and bureaucracy-intensive hospital system. Joan Cassell is an advocate as well as comparative ethnographer, and her work will appeal to anyone concerned with health policy or the social world of modern medicine generally."
—Charles E. Rosenberg, Harvard University
Introduction – Moonscape: The Surgical Intensive Care Unit
1. A Caring Ethic: Nurses and the Dilemma of Powerlessness
2. The Best of Times, the Worst of Times: The Residents
3. Diverse Universes of Medical Discourse: The Fellows
4. The Attendings
5. Is Death the Enemy, or Suffering?
6. Confronting Death in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit
7. Intensive Caring in New Zealand
8. Going Gentle into that Good Night: Death in Auckland
9. Focusing on the Bottom Line
10. The Dominion of Death


BooK details:
Author:Joan Cassell
Publisher:Temple University Press (March 30, 2005)
Pages:248
Size:785 KB
Format:pdf


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