End-of-Life Care

People with intellectual or developmental disabilities (ID/DD) are living longer lives, making aging issues increasingly relevant for them and their families. Longer lifespans, however, do not necessarily translate to healthier lives. Research has shown that more people with ID/DD may die of chronic or preventable conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, or cancer. When the process of dying is ongoing instead of sudden, end-of-life (EOL) care is provided as a way to ease suffering. Thus, EOL care may be an increasingly important policy and practice issue to address for individuals with ID/DD, their families, and staff. EOL care refers to a set of practices, values, and policies that are most often invoked when an individual has been identified as having a health condition that ...

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