Facilitating older spouses’ adjustment to widowhood: A preventive intervention program

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The features of a preventive mental health intervention developed to assist late middle-aged and older spouses’ psychosocial adjustment to spousal death from cancer and facilitate their transition to widowhood are described. Beginning during the last few months of the patient’s illness and continuing into the initial months of the post-death period, the program is designed to provide the well/surviving spouse with emotional support, facilitate grief work and enable open discussion. Program format and delivery are discussed and the pre- and post-death components are presented. High risk criteria are used to target spouses at risk for morbid bereavement outcomes. The rationale for the risk profile is discussed. Implications of the program for social work practice are provided.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-32
Number of pages20
JournalSocial Work in Health Care
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2000


  • Bereavement
  • Cancer
  • Grief
  • Older adults
  • Psychosocial intervention
  • Risk profile
  • Support services
  • Terminal illness
  • Widowhood

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Community and Home Care
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Facilitating older spouses’ adjustment to widowhood: A preventive intervention program'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this