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Animal-Assisted Therapy at a University Centre for Palliative Medicine – a Qualitative Content Analysis of Patient Records

Animal-assisted therapy (AAT) is a therapeutic concept, which has only recently been explored in more detail within the palliative care setting. A programme of AAT was begun in June 2014 at the Interdisciplinary Centre for Palliative Medicine of the University Hospital Dusseldorf, Germany. The AAT sessions were performed by two trained and certified dog assistant therapy teams (DATT). To date only very limited scientific data are available with regard to feasibility, therapeutic indications and efficacy of AAT in palliative care. The present qualitative study aims to describe the first year’s practice and experience of AAT after implementation as an integral part of adjunctive therapy options offered within an academic palliative care centre. Read more here.