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Accepted Paper:

From praying for long life to waiting for early death: dying and death in long-term social care facilities  
Miroslava Kinczer (Slovak Academy of Sciences)

Paper short abstract:

Death in social service facilities is a very present phenomenon that affects all residents and, at the same time, concerns the facilities' staff, who are the "last human contact" for the dying person. This paper is focused on how death is perceived by the clients and employees of these institutions.

Paper long abstract:

In Europe, at present, between 12 and 38% of the oldest people die in a long-term care facility (Honix et al., 2019). Residential facilities for seniors in Slovakia provide social services for more than 20,000 people (CRPSS QIV 2021). However, the majority of clients of the facility for older adults die directly in the institution, another part during the transfer, or after being transferred to the hospital. My currently ongoing field research is focused on individual actors (Latour, 2005), that enter the subjective well-being of residents in these facilities, and how these actors enter the social interactions between them and the care givers. From this perspective, actual death and the presence of a dying person show up as a very important part of the client’s well-being. Gossiping and joking about death, complaining about the agony of waiting for death to come, and reflecting on their own mortality and the irreversible end of their lives, are very present phenomenons among people living in a social care facility. How is death contextualized at the place, where it is part of the work routine among employees, and where is no longer room for fighting for life among clients?

With my paper, I would like to share some of the preliminary findings focused on how the clients of these facilities perceive death and dying as part of their well-being in a social care facility.

Panel Narr02
Uncertain death: narrative and physical death and the spaces in between
  Session 2 Saturday 10 June, 2023, -