A Humanistic Approach to Working with a Terminally Ill Patient

1017 words 5 pages
A Humanistic Approach to Working with a Terminally Ill Patient “Humanistic psychology . . . emphasizes the independent dignity and worth of human beings and their conscious capacity to develop personal competence and self respect” (Humanistic Psychology Overview, 2001). This view of humanistic psychology shows why a humanistic approach is valuable and effective when working with patients who have a terminal illness, such as cancer. This paper will provide an example of a humanistic approach by a medical professional in providing care to a terminally ill patient. This paper will also provide a reflection of my feelings on the approach, my thoughts on how I would prefer a human service worker to work with me in such an instance, and …show more content…

If positive and realistically attainable outcomes could be presented, I believe I would welcome and cling to the hope that those goals would provide. I do not believe this action would be unethical in any way. If I could die, even with a glimpse of hope for experiencing more of life, then I will be better for it. In reflecting on this subject, I can see how unconditional positive regard would be exhibited in this type of situation. Unconditional positive regard is “the experience of receiving warmth, respect, sympathy, acceptance, caring, and trust from others simply for being who they are” (Parrott III, 2003, p. 186). When a human service worker provides care to a terminally ill patient using a humanistic approach, they see the patient as a person. Jill Preston (2001) stated that “. . . I viewed Brenda as a person first and a patient second.” With this view, the human service worker shows the elements of unconditional positive regard through listening to the patient, using touch, showing emotion, and accurately relaying information back to the patient to show understanding. The human service worker provides these elements to the patient no matter what, showing the patient that he or she does not have to give to get. The patient truly receives this positive regard unconditionally. In conclusion, an example of a humanistic approach to working with a terminally ill patient has been provided. I have