||Improvements in medical science and health care have gradually changed the nature of dying. Death is no longer likely to be the sudden result of infection or injury, but is now more likely to occur slowly, in old age, and at the end of a period of chronic illness. As a result, a demographic shift is beginning to occur that will include an increase in the number of seriously ill and dying people at the same time that the number of caregivers decreases. To meet this challenge, the best that science can offer must be applied to guarantee the quality of care provided to the dying.
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