Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Existential Suffering in Palliative Care: An Existential Positive Psychology Perspective

Version 1 : Received: 29 July 2021 / Approved: 30 July 2021 / Online: 30 July 2021 (14:27:09 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Wong, P.T.P.; Yu, T.T.F. Existential Suffering in Palliative Care: An Existential Positive Psychology Perspective. Medicina 2021, 57, 924. Wong, P.T.P.; Yu, T.T.F. Existential Suffering in Palliative Care: An Existential Positive Psychology Perspective. Medicina 2021, 57, 924.

Journal reference: Medicina 2021, 57, 924
DOI: 10.3390/medicina57090924

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the inadequacies of the current healthcare system and needs a paradigm change, which is holistic, and community based illustrated by the healing wheel. The present paper proposes that existential positive psychology (PP 2.0) represents a promising approach to meet the rising needs in palliative care. This framework has a twofold emphasis on (a) How to transcend and transform suffering as the foundation for wellbeing, and (b) how to cultivate our spiritual and existential capabilities to achieve personal growth and flourishing. We propose that these objectives can be achieved simultaneously through dialectical palliative counselling, as illustrated by Wong’s integrative meaning therapy (Wong, 2020) and Lo’s Conceptual Model of CALM Therapy in palliative care (Lo et al., 2014). We then discuss existential suffering in general and at the last stage of life in particular; we also review recent research and interventions on existential suffering in palliative patients. Finally, we outline the objectives and the strategies of IMT in providing palliative counselling for palliative care and hospice patients.

Keywords

Palliative care; Meaning therapy; CALM therapy; COVID-19; Existential positive psychology; Good death; wellbeing; mature happiness; flourishing

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