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Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, "5 stages" model, nursing, textbooks



  1. Corr, Donna M. RN, MSN
  2. Corr, Charles A. PhD


Nursing education programs and nursing textbooks often present accounts of the work of Dr Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and her "5 stages" model. In this article, we examine a sampling of recent North American nursing textbooks to illustrate the different ways those subjects are discussed. Unfortunately, the information provided is not always accurate or helpful in guiding readers. We describe why that is so and suggest some ways in which better guidance could be delivered. It is particularly timely to undertake this examination since 2019 is the 50th anniversary of the publication of On Death and Dying, the well-known book in which Dr Kubler-Ross first published her theory and descriptions of the work that led to it.