The development of a narrative describing the bereavement of families of potential organ donors

A systematic review

Sean DICKS, Kristen RANSE, H.L. Northam, Douglas BOER, Frank Van Haren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)
8 Downloads (Pure)


Families of potential post-mortem organ donors face various challenges in the unfamiliar hospital context and after returning home. This review of sources published between 1968 and 2017 seeks to understand their journey as a bereavement experience with a number of unique features. Grief theory was used to identify ways that staff can assist family members to tolerate ambiguities and vulnerabilities while contributing to an environment characterised by compassion and social inclusion. Staff can guide families and create opportunities for meaningful participation, building resilience and developing bereavement-related skills that could assist them in the months that follow
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalHealth Psychology Open
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017


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