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Alzheimer’s Expert Stephen G Post Ph.D. guide for Alzheimer’s patients and their caregivers – Dignity for deeply forgetful people: How Caregivers Can Meet the Challenges of Alzheimer’s Disease.
In Dignity for Deeply Forgetful People: How Caregivers Can Meet the Challenges of Alzheimer’s Disease, Stephen G. Post Ph.D., recipient of the Alzheimer’s Association Distinguished Service Award, shifts the focus from finding a cure for Alzheimer’s to seeing and connecting with the whole person—their core personality, preferences, emotions, creativity, and capacity for joy—despite the limitations of dementia. An advocate for “deeply forgetful people” since the early 1990s, Post teaches caregivers and professionals how to notice the self-identity that always remains and how to communicate effectively. “We are not in any essential way very different from them,” Post drives home, “unless we choose to overvalue linear rationality and independence, overlook their many other human qualities, and pretend that we are not all ultimately vulnerable and interdependent.”
With a powerful endorsement from His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the book title says it all: Dignity for Deeply Forgetful People. Post avoids the word “dementia” because it is a negative term, exclusively about the decline from a former mental state that invites oft-heard negative metaphors such as “gone, husk, shell, absent.” Instead, the Post prefers the term “deeply forgetful people” as a language of inclusion, placing us all on a continuum of a community of human dignity.
We talk about
STEPHEN G. POST, Ph.D., is Director of the Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care, and Bioethics at Stony Brook University Renaissance School of Medicine. He also serves as a Family, Population, and Preventative Medicine professor and Head of the Division of Medicine in Society. He is an
elected Member of the Medical and Scientific Advisory Board of Alzheimer’s Disease International and one of only three recipients of the Alzheimer’s Association Distinguished Service Award. His first book, The Moral Challenge of Alzheimer’s Disease (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000), was hailed as a “medical classic of the century” by the British Medical Journal. He has been featured internationally in the media, including The Daily Show. Post received the United States Congress Certificate of Special Recognition “In Recognition of Outstanding Achievement” (28 November 2012). In addition, he shared the Pioneer Medal for Outstanding Leadership in HealthCare with Dr. Edmund D. Pellegrino, MD (2012).