Well today got me thinking about the patiens I've been with at the time of their deaths,and their families. We are tought to be rather blatant about our patients condition to their families. We are to tell them their loved one died, as opposed to passed away, passed on, gone to see god,and other such cliches. I, for one, try to make sure the family is prepared for the worst. I make sure to tell them the situation is dire, the patient is very critical, it doesn't sound nice but then when the patient does die the family has had time to prepare for the worst.
Mind you, I am talking about patients in cardiac arrest,or trauma patients with injuries incompatible with life, not everyday patients.
Another thing I always do is ask the family if there is anyone I can call,or if they'd like to speak with any clergy. I have no problem with this. It it their time to grieve and I want to do what I can to ease the grief. I have also been asked many times to pray with the family. I don't particularly mind this either. I generally pay no mind to the prayer and just stand there respectfully. I would never lead the prayer of course, but if the family would like to pray good for them. I have no problem with this practice, and while I don't agree with their beliefs, I do think it is comforting to them.
Should anything horrible ever happen to my family, I would not mind seeing the hospitals minister at my side. He is a very liberal kind man whom I respect and consider a friend. He would and probably does pray for me but, he would never try to pray with me.
By the way... Sorry for the aweful grammatical errors my fat fingers and iPod do not get along.