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Resources and information on bereavement and grief for the public and healthcare professionals.


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Bereavement and Grief Resources and Support

This guide provide information and resources about bereavement and loss. 

For more information information on bereavement, including details of workshops and education programmes visit the dedicated bereavement section of the Irish Hospice Foundation's website.  


The Therese Brady Bereavement Library at the Irish Hospice Foundation 

Recent Articles & Commentary

**An exploration of clinical psychology's response to parental bereavement in adults with intellectual disability.
; The dearth of literature regarding how or when to intervene when an adult with intellectual disability is bereaved may impede clinical practice; this study therefore aimed to explore the current clinical psychology response, so as to enhance understanding of the role of the profession in supporting grief within this population. Method: A collective case study design was used. Data for six persons with intellectual disability, including interviews with parentally bereaved persons and involved staff members, were integrated into individual case stories for cross-case synthesis. 

**What are the physical and psychological health effects of suicide bereavement on family members? Protocol for an observational and interview mixed-methods study in Ireland. [Open Access]
Abstract; Research indicates that experiencing the suicide of a relative can have a significant impact on family members' emotional health. However, research incorporating the impact of suicide bereavement on family members' physical health is sparse. This paper details the protocol for a mixed-methods study of suicide-bereaved family members. The study will primarily examine the physical and mental health needs of those bereaved by suicide. A secondary objective of the study is to describe the support service needs of family members bereaved by suicide. 


**Complicated grief: Knowledge, attitudes, skills and training of mental health professionals: A systematic review.

Abstract; A systematic review and qualitative synthesis was undertaken to deduce the knowledge, attitudes, skills and training of mental health professionals regarding complicated grief (CG). METHODS: PsychInfo, Embase, Medline, CINAHL, PBSC, Web of Science and ERIC databases were used to identify relevant literature. Searches were executed from inception to September 2014. RESULTS: The electronic search yielded 305 results. Forty-one papers were selected for full text review, 20 were included for analysis. 6 examined primary data, the remaining 14 being reviews, opinion or guideline pieces. CONCLUSIONS: Despite the lack of consensus on terminology, criteria and diagnosis, it appears that there is more than sufficient agreement within the CG research community regarding the knowledge and skills required to assist someone presenting with CG. A palpable fear of medicalising grief exists, but this would seem to be based on a conflation of normal grief and CG. This review highlights the mainly unidirectional nature of current research, the voice of the practitioner being largely unheard. A need for and an interest in training in CG was expressed.


A qualitative systematic review of the bereavement process following suicide.

Abstract; Despite the fact that a large number of people are bereaved by suicide each year, the experiences of those bereaved by suicide are poorly understood. It has been suggested that a contributing factor in relation to this lack of understanding has been the use of quantitative methods, which may not be sensitive to the bereavement process and its thematic content. Therefore, the current article outlines a systematic review of 11 qualitative studies that address issues related to the bereavement process following suicide. The results indicate that those bereaved by suicide encounter a range of difficult feelings following suicide including blame, guilt, and emptiness and that these feelings are affected by participants’ ability to make meaning of the event. The meaning-making process is a complex one that occurs within a difficult social context in which both those bereaved by suicide and members of the wider community struggle to interact with each other in a beneficial way. Clinical implications of these findings are discussed.


Bereavement support standards and bereavement care pathway for quality palliative care. 

Abstract; Provision of bereavement support is an essential component of palliative care service delivery. While bereavement support is integral to palliative care, it is typically insufficiently resourced, under-researched, and not systematically applied. Our aim was to develop bereavement standards to assist palliative care services to provide targeted support to family caregivers. We employed a multiple-methods design for our study, which included: (1) a literature review, (2) a survey of palliative care service providers in Australia, (3) interviews with national (Australian) and international experts, (4) key stakeholder workshops, and (5) a modified Delphi-type survey. A total of 10 standards were developed along with a pragmatic care pathway to assist palliative care services with implementation of the standards. The bereavement standards and care pathway constitute a key initiative in the evolution of bereavement support provided by palliative care services. Future endeavors should refine and examine the impact of these standards. Additional research is required to enhance systematic approaches to quality bereavement care.


** Irish Research  

News about bereavement and grief

How do you talk to kids about death?The Guardian, Mar 4th

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