Services Rendered: An End-of-Life (EOL) Doula is a non-medical professional that provides physical, emotional, and spiritual support to the patient, family, loved ones, friends, and their support networks. An EOL Doula will assist the family with understanding the natural process while providing suggestions for comfort and support. This holistic support for the dying and their loved ones will occur before, during, and after death.
Every patient and family served is unique and services will be tailored to their individual needs.
The goal of an EOL Doula is to collaborate with hospice, palliative team, and other healthcare professionals to create a dynamic support system ensuring the highest quality of life for a patients end-of-life care. Referrals to appropriate professional and community resources will be made as needed for services that are outside of the EOL Doula scope of practice.
An EOL Doula will provide education regarding the end-of-life processes and options available so that patients and families can make informed decisions about their care. An EOL doula is not a medical provider and as such any information or advice given should be viewed in that light.
Limits to Practice: Doulagivers ® standards and certification apply only to the physical, emotional, spiritual, and educational support at end-of-life. EOL Doulas do not perform any medical tasks such as administering medication, taking blood pressure or temperature, providing wound care, empty or change catheter, or change a dying persons diaper regardless of their background or licensure outside of the EOL Doula training and scope of practice. Those EOL Doulas with additional training (i.e. Nurses, social worker, CNAs, massage therapist, herbalist etc.) serving the dying who chose to work outside of the scope of practice as an EOL Doula must identify themselves with such credentials allowing transparency and avoiding confusion regarding the role of a EOL Doula. The additional modalities outside of the scope of an EOL Doula must be identified as an additional service.
Advocacy: An EOL Doula supports their client by advocating for their autonomy in choices and by encouraging communication with family, caregivers, and professionals working in direct care of the patient.
Professional Conduct: An EOL Doula working under this scope of practice agrees to the following:
- To demonstrate integrity and ethical standards in their professional conduct.
- To respond to clients and potential clients within the courteous and professional timeframe of no more than 48 hours. If the EOL Doula is unavailable for some period of time due to vacation or leave from doula work they will communicate that to those that contact them, to avoid the feeling of non-responsiveness from the doula community.
- To not impose their own values or beliefs on patient or clients served.
- That no confidential information received in a professional capacity from their client will be divulged. This includes all cases discussed in peer review meetings – Age and Diagnosis can be discussed but no Personal Identifier Information (PII).
- Make every effort to honor agreements and contracts for professional services and providing back up doula care should they be unable to meet commitments.
- Introduce patient and care team to back up EOL Doula.
- Follow up to ensure patient needs are being met.
- At all times engage with colleagues in an ethical, professional, and respectful manner.
- Promote ethical conduct within the profession.