Episode 119 - Dr. Dona Reese: "A Friendly Face:" Addressing Barriers to Hospice Care for African American Clients by Hiring African American Social Workers

Monday, May 13, 2013, 8:59:13 AM

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The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization reported that in 2011 over a million and a half people utilized hospice services in the United States. In this podcast, Dr. Dona Reese talks about the lack of utilization of hospice care by African American patients. This includes identifying variables that influence African American hospice use. One of those barriers is the almost complete absence of African American staff or volunteers in hospices across the nation. Dr. Reese describes a field placement and community intervention project that was a successful first step in accomplishing the goal of increasing African American staff. Additionally, she offers her thoughts on what must be done to expand the number of African American social work professionals in hospice settings.

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Average Rating: 5stars  episode 119: a friendly face - review, Sunday, February 14, 2021

By Delilah Murray :

This podcast was simply amazing. As an African American woman who one, wants to pursue a career in social work in a hospital, and two, watched her mother spend her final moments in hospice, I feel very connected to this podcast. This podcast is very informative regarding the personal struggles of African Americans when it comes to healthcare. It may same as though we receive equal services, but there are so many underlying issues and concerns that are often overlooked when brought to the surface. My community is a close community, and this is due to our traumatic history; so having that sense of comfort, unity, and representation in the end is very important to us. Hospice care can be scary for anyone who is terminally ill or who simply did not expect that time to come soon, but the key part of hospice is understanding that everyone reacts to the end of life differently and if that cannot be incorporated into care and policies, then there will always be that lack of diversity.Thank Dr. Dona Reese for such an informative piece and shedding more light on daily struggles in the African American community.

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Average Rating: 3stars  disappointed in this one, Thursday, July 18, 2013

By marybeth :

I'm a new social work student interested in hospice so was thrilled to see this episode posted. I was surprised though at what seemed to be the lack of cultural competence of the guest. I'll give her the benefit of the doubt because I didn't listen to the whole thing (was hard to listen because of what was said) but if I heard correctly, she refers to "her research" that found that African Americans don't trust the health care system and have religious values that can conflict with those of hospice. These things are completely common knowledge to any non-African American who 1) knows some African Americans, 2) has done the work of becoming even a little bit culturally competent in health care or 3) looked in an undergraduate level text. I imagine the host, who obviously understood this topic, struggled with the conversation, although she remained impressively professional. Three stars because the topic is important, but definitely disappointed with this. I realize that most white folk are not culturally competent, but expected more from a researcher on this topic holding a PhD. Again, take with a grain of salt as I did not listen past the point of her chuckling about not wanting only African American subjects in the community intervention project. I was done at that point.

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