Personhood-Based Dementia Care: Using the Familial Caregiver as a Bridging Model for Professional Caregivers


  • Michael Gabriel Fetterolf



With biomedicine at the forefront of our culture's understanding of illness, true healing is often neglected. It has become common practice to place elderly persons with Alzheimer's disease in nursing homes or long-term care facilities that do not always regard the sufferers' well-being as a top priority. This article draws from familial caregiving roles as a basis for understanding personhood, which I take to be a bridge between the world of a caregiver and the world of an Alzheimer's sufferer. Furthermore, through the modeling of professional caregiving strategies, I show how one might form meaningful relationships in long-term care facilities, and likewise provide the aging and afflicted person with forms of healing.


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