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The experience and support needs of adult family members who face a sudden adult death: a systematic review study.

Stephen, Audrey; Baguley, Fiona

Authors

Audrey Stephen

Fiona Baguley



Abstract

This systematic review explored the experiences of adults with support from professional service providers when facing the sudden death of an adult family member. The reviewers used Joanna Briggs Institute methods, tools and software. Database searches were carried out in ASSIA, CINAHL, MEDLINE, PsychArticles. These were supplemented with searches of e-thesis databases, and specialist law sites. Studies were identified for inclusion if they were qualitative, in English and published between 1990 and December 2021. Across the 19 papers included, the review found family members received support at the time of a sudden death from a range of sources. However, there were differences in timing and content and for some relatives, barriers to access and many unmet needs. Experiences of support from professionals varied and some had more positive outcomes than others. A relationship between the family member and the professional which was perceived as supportive led to benefits for processing grief. While informal support and information is essential, anticipation of needs and appropriate responses require regulated professionals and organisations who encounter the bereaved to be visible, accessible, skilled and able to respond. It is recommended this is formalised in standards or protocols for support in relation to sudden death situations.

Citation

STEPHEN, A. and BAGULEY, F. 2023. The experience and support needs of adult family members who face a sudden adult death: a systematic review study. Bereavement: journal of grief and responses to death [online], 2, article number 1100. Available from: https://doi.org/10.54210/bj.2023.1100

Journal Article Type Review
Acceptance Date May 3, 2023
Online Publication Date Sep 6, 2023
Publication Date Dec 31, 2023
Deposit Date Oct 31, 2023
Publicly Available Date Oct 31, 2023
Journal Bereavement: journal of grief and responses to death
Electronic ISSN 2754-7833
Publisher Cruse Bereavement Care
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 2
Article Number 1100
DOI https://doi.org/10.54210/bj.2023.1100
Keywords Bereavement; Loss; Death; Sudden bereavement; Bereavement support services
Public URL https://rgu-repository.worktribe.com/output/2092963

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