The Journey's End: An Investigation of Death and Dying In Modern America (Hardcover)
usually available in 3-5 business days
In the tradition of Atul Gawande's Being Mortal, this compassionate work helps individuals develop a more accepting view of dying while teaching them what to expect and how to navigate the healthcare system at the end of life. In elderhood, the health care system has a narrow view of how to provide care. It focuses on extending a patient's life at all costs, with an over-reliance on machines and procedures, instead of caring holistically for the person. Accordingly, many of us will likely spend our final weeks in long-term care facilities or an ICU. Dying at home, peacefully, and surrounded by family is almost impossible in our world--and our fear of death is a major contributor to this impossibility. Fittingly, the central idea of this book is that in old age, or when facing a terminal diagnosis, it is more important to understand your life rather than to extend it. While this may seem simple, its implications are profound. A natural death means accepting that, at some point, we are old enough or sick enough to die. In our cynical and overly clinical age, it is difficult to reflect on the meaning of one's life, but that kind of honest introspection is exactly what we need. Accordingly, The Journey's End seeks to help people manage their healthcare, their expectations, and their decisions in the final phase of life.
About the Author
Michael D. Connelly served as the CEO of Mercy Health, one of the nation's largest health systems, from 1994 to 2017. Currently, he is the CEO Emeritus of Mercy Health (now Bon Secours Mercy Health System). He has global experience with health systems in Germany, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Sweden and Spain. He has also visited health facilities and orphanages around the world, including in Port a Prince, Haiti; Mathare Slums in Nairobi, Kenya; Kingston, Jamaica; Georgetown, Guyana, and Panguma, Sierra Leone. He has extensive governance experience and has chaired the following boards: Catholic Charities USA, the Urban League of SWO, the National Catholic Health Association, Catholic Medical Mission Board (CMMB) in NYC, and Premier, Inc. He also chaired the United Way for Greater Cincinnati (the 6th largest in the US) in 2013. He has published 17 articles in various healthcare journals, and currently lives on Johns Island, South Carolina.