International Seven Journal of Health Research

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Palliative care at the end of life and the role of the psychologist

Covalciuk V

Viviane Covalciuk


Palliative care
Terminal patient
Multiprofessional team
Psychologist's work
Psychological intervention.
Cuidados paliativos
Paciente terminal
Equipe multiprofissional
Atuação do psicólogo
Intervenção psicológica.


Mallampati, Orotracheal intubation, Modifications.Palliative care (PC) is defined as care for patients diagnosed with progressive, incurable and/or chronic-degenerative diseases, and can cover any life-threatening illness that culminates in finitude. Therefore, PC aims to ease the pain and relieve the suffering of invasive treatments by providing dignity, comfort and welcome to improve the quality of life of patients diagnosed with incurable diseases; this care can also include the individual's family members and caregivers, providing them with welcome, assistance and support to deal with the issues arising from the progression of the disease. Thus, the aim of this study is to describe the participation of the multi-professional team in PC, the patient and their family, i.e. all those involved in this process of becoming ill until the end of life, and in particular to investigate how psychology works in caring for the patient, the family/caregiver and the healthcare team. This study used the literature review method. This bibliographic review selected 27 scientific articles, 02 books, 01 Resolution of the Federal Council of Psychology, 01 Manual of Palliative Care of the National Academy of Palliative Care, 01 Manual of Palliative Care of the Sírio Libanês Hospital, 01 Primer of the Brazilian Society of Geriatrics and Gerontology, 01 thesis. It will record how the patient copes during the journey from the diagnosis of illness to the end of life, as well as the participation and experience of the family, the multi-professional team and in particular the participation of Psychology within this scenario, as it is the scientific field that covers the holistic sphere of the individual, and its premise is to deal with issues involving human relationships, bringing the necessary comfort in the face of this new context of an established disease that will cause the end of existence. In this way, the psychologist is the professional trained to study mental processes, such as feelings, thoughts, behaviors, understanding their subjectivity and, in this context, helping the individual to understand their self in the face of the serious and irreversible clinical state that precedes the proximity of death, resolving outstanding issues with themselves and their families, providing support so that everyone can be at peace at the moment of farewell. Finally, it will discuss the importance of humanized care in PC through the inclusion of a specific subject in the undergraduate courses of health professionals, paying special attention to the field of psychological knowledge since it is the professional who is the protagonist in this scenario.