The imagination of care : caregivers’ perspectives on end of life care in rest homes.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
This study explores and examines the roles of caregivers within rest home facilities in New Zealand; and specifically, how they unpack and deal with managing the tensions associated with end of life (EOL) care. It adopted a qualitative perspective to enable an exploration of how the experiences of caregivers help guide their practice and understanding of their roles in relation to EOL care. A grounded theory framework was utilised in order to explore how caregivers make meaning and find value in the roles they perform within rest home facilities. This study offers insights into some of the tensions that caregivers face in a working environment where life and death occur simultaneously. It was apparent that caregivers are aware of the many social taboos they must negotiate in order to conduct their work. It was also apparent that they understood that others might perceive their work as dirty but that this did not prevent them from finding job satisfaction and create meaning in their work. Instead, they created meaning by using the conceptual tool the imagination of care. This involved utilising their imagination and past experiences to enable EOL care which represented the dying rites of individual residents but also fitted within their ethic of care.