By Robert H. Binstock, Leighton E Cluff, Robert H Binstock, Leighton E. Cluff MD, Robert H. Binstock PhD

In The misplaced paintings of being concerned, Leighton E. Cluff, M.D., and Robert H. Binstock, Ph.D., collect specialists to handle the significance of worrying, the explanations why it has eroded, and measures that could improve being concerned as supplied by way of well-being execs, households, groups, and society.

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Extra resources for The Lost Art of Caring: A Challenge to Health Professionals, Families, Communities, and Society

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We are meant to be neither a burden on ourselves nor a burden on others. And medicine often does a superb job in making that possible. But not always. Sometimes it does not work and, like it or not, we become dependent, our autonomy severely compromised or lost. Then there are two problems to be dealt with. One of them is that of caring for a patient who has lost autonomy and is dependent upon others. That takes particular skills, most of them demanding, and most centered on physical care. The other problem is that the patient has been put into that culturally most dreaded situation—a state of dependency, lacking autonomy.

The drive for medical cures, the hype of research agendas, the classy ads of glowing elders on their way to see the Galapagos Islands, Viagra at the ready, serve only to mask that permanence. More than that, they have managed to make caring seem like a second-rate activity, something we do for the biological losers, something we try to hide from public view, something we hire the  Daniel Callahan poor and near-poor to relieve us of at the minimal wage level, or the females in our families, who are expected to do it for nothing.

It is often the seemingly trivial, unnoticed features of life—the casual touch of others, the quiet companionship that friendship brings, the look of concern on the face of a nurse—that constitute the day-to-day security of our lives. Illness and disability can destroy them and only caring can help reconstitute them, bringing back into our lives not only the familiarity of ingrained routine that helps give meaning, but also the presence of others, restoring community and banishing loneliness and isolation.

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