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Elderly Israelis and their family members (n = 41) from 13 nuclear families were interviewed individually and conjointly concerning their beliefs about end-of-life decisions that would involve prolonging life or hastening death. The transcribed interviews were analyzed using the hermeneutic phenomenology approach since the purpose of the study was to reveal and interpret beliefs that were not easily visible to participants. The premise of the study was that it would be possible to identify family beliefs that had been unintentionally, but collectively constructed by family members. The results presented 6 belief themes and 3 communication strategies that supported our premise. These family beliefs and communication patterns have practical implications for professionals working with families that are making end-of-life decisions.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2002

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