Interprofessional Care

Bearing Witness to Suffering. ~ Laura van Dernoot Lipsky

In this talk, Laura offers us a window into the cumulative toll that can occur when we are exposed to the suffering, hardship, crisis or trauma of humans, other living beings, or the planet itself. Held within a larger context of systematic oppression and liberation theory, we'll dive into what gets hard and how to work toward reconciling it both individually and collectively.

The Way Forward: An Integrated Palliative Approach to Care.

"Imagine a time when hospice palliative care is available to Canadians when and where they need it; where living well until death is the goal of care". 

Palliative Care Sooner for Patients But Also for Medical Professionals.

"Changing culture is a process. Awareness and understanding of palliative care is often limited, yet the benefits are discernible from better quality of life to care more consistent with patient preferences, to more recent data indicating improved survival. My experience with palliative medicine as a first-year medical student has made me realize how vital palliative care education could be for all medical students".

"Changing culture is a process. Awareness and understanding of palliative care is often limited, yet the benefits are discernible from better quality of life to care more consistent with patient preferences, to more recent data indicating improved survival. My experience with palliative medicine as a first-year medical student has made me realize how vital palliative care education could be for all medical students".

The Paternalism Preference — Choosing Unshared Decision Making.

"Consent is not merely the granting of permission but an exercise in choosing, and choice requires disclosure of a certain amount of information. How much information is adequate? Rather tautologically, as much as necessary to decide: 'The scope of the physician's communications to the patient must be measured by the patient's need, and that need is whatever information is material to the decision'.”

Finishing Strong: Moments of Life Made Possible by Hospice.

"In September 2012, Bryan Caldwell was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. A former professional football player in the NFL, rancher and surfer, he embodies strength. His wife, Krista, a nurse with Houston Hospice El Campo, even tells the story of how the morning before he was diagnosed, Bryan mowed the yard with a collapsed lung.

Six months into his fight with lymphoma, Bryan learned his cancer was unresponsive to medical treatments. He knew he wanted to spend his remaining time living without pain, at home, surrounded by all he loved. So he chose hospice care.

'Our whole philosophy is not to stay sitting, it’s to stay moving and to keep living each moment that comes along,' says Bryan. 'Hospice provides that golden opportunity for me, every single day. If I have the energy and I feel up to it, I’m getting out there'.”

Trauma Workers Find Solace In A Pause That Honors Life After A Death.

"Jonathan Bartels is a nurse working in emergency care. He says witnessing death over and over again takes a toll on trauma workers — they can become numb or burned out. So the next time we worked on another person who didn't make it, I decided to be bold and stop people from leaving," he says. "I just said, 'Can we stop just for a moment, to recognize this person in the bed? You know, this person before they came in here was alive — they were interacting with family, they were loved by others, they had a life.' "

The team did it. Standing together silently, they stopped — just for a minute.

"When it was done, I said, 'Thank you all, and thank you for the efforts that we did to try and save them.' People walked out of the room, and they thanked me," Bartels says.

What's come to be called The Pause is now being taught as part of the curriculum at the university's nursing school. Emergency medical technician Jack Berner says it helps him handle the toughest cases. ‘It makes it so we can actually view the person as a person, rather than as a patient that we see on an everyday basis,’ he says. ‘You can relate more to the case, [knowing] it's somebody's father or their mother, their sister or their uncle, rather than somebody you just see for five minutes’."