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May 26, 2004

The Role of Nurse Practitioners in End-of-Life Care—Reply

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie, MD, PhD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2004;291(20):2432. doi:10.1001/jama.291.20.2432-b

In Reply: We wholeheartedly support the suggestion by Ms Demarest that NPs be included in the care of family caregivers at the end of life. Generally, the complexity and difficulty of caregiver support demands the multiple perspectives, expertise, and services of a committed interdisciplinary team. As we noted, physicians have opportunities to assist family caregivers in their role, both as individual clinicians and as members of an interdisciplinary team. Although we focused on the physician's role in initiating, orchestrating, and supervising the teamwork necessary for home care, collaboration among all those serving patients in any setting is critical. With their expertise in education and counseling, NPs, especially those skilled in end-of-life care, have much to add.

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