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REG. $28

Death and Dying: The “Butterflies are Free” Program

Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO)

CE Credit: 2 Hours

Target Audience: Psychology CE | Counseling CE | Social Work CE | Occupational Therapy CEUs | Marriage & Family Therapy CE | Nutrition & Dietetics CE

Learning Level: Introductory

Course Type: Online

Course Abstract

Dying isn’t a subject that Americans like to think about. Our national character is vibrant, optimistic, life-affirming. These qualities have been a great advantage to us as a people, but they have a down side. They make us less inclined to think about the inevitable sad events such as death. Consequently, we are often less prepared for it, psychologically and otherwise, than people in other cultures. The “Butterflies are Free” program was designed by the Staff Associates at Life Care Center in Sarasota, FL to help overcome this problem and to enable healthcare workers and come to prepare for an ill person’s passing. This course presents a case study which reveals how the Life Care Center created and implemented an effective End-of-Life program for their residents. The purpose of this course is to introduce the history, ideals, and practices behind the program in the hopes that it may be adopted in other nursing home facilities.

Closeout Course #20-35 | 2006 | 22 pages | 15 posttest questions

Learning Objectives

1. Identify the five issues that became the basis for the “Butterflies are Free” program
2. List the eight objectives developed to attain program goals
3. Name the characteristics of each of Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’s five stages of grieving
4. Identify the tasks to be accomplished in each of the three stages of the Butterfly program
5. Summarize the seven focus points of the Butterflies program

Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists; by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) to offer home study continuing education for NCCs (#5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB #1046, ACE Program); the Florida Boards of Clinical Social Work, Marriage & Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling (#BAP346) and Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); and the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678).


This online course provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. After enrolling, click on My Account and scroll down to My Active Courses. From here you’ll see links to download/print the course materials and take the CE test (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more.

About the Author(s)
Certified by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) since 2002, LCCS provides skilled nursing care; inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation, including orthopedic and stroke rehabilitation; IV, anodyne and oxygen therapy; wound management and respite services. LCCS is best known for its end-of-life care program, “Butterflies Are Free,” designed to provide peace and hope for hospice patients and their families. This program attracted much attention and won the facility the 2005 Nursing Homes Magazine OPTIMA Award.
The program was developed by combining the work of a number of specialty teams in the facility: an Education Team, comprised of the Executive Director, Director of Nursing, Staff Development Coordinator, Social Workers, Hospice, and family members; a Clinical Needs Team, comprised of the Director of Nursing, Assistant Director of Nursing, unit managers, nurses, Pharmacist, nursing assistants, and Hospice; a Psychosocial Needs Team, which was composed of the Executive Director, Social Workers, Central Supply Coordinator, unit managers, nurses, nursing assistants, dietary associates, and housekeepers; and various resident participants.

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