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Palliative Care Grand Rounds 1.5

By June 3, 2009

Welcome to volume one, issue 5 of Palliative Care Grand Rounds!

Here you will find an overview of what's been happening on the web in regards to palliative care, death, dying, end-of-life care, and all sorts of related topics for the past month.

Palliative Care Grand Rounds is hosted on the first Wednesday of every month and rotated through various palliative care blogs. For issues 1-4 of Palliative Care Grand Rounds (PGR), visit the PGR homepage.

This entry is much longer than my usual posts so I encourage you to sort through and view whatever looks interesting to you now and revisit at a later time to read the rest. Here we go!

A recent study done by Harvard University Medical School found that hospice care is underutilized by patients. This isn't news to any of us working in hospice care but the more research we have as to why this discrepancy remains, the better equipped we are to overcome the barriers.

One of my favorite hospice nurse bloggers, Dethmama, related an experience all to common for hospice workers, the unrelenting territorial dog and uninterested owner, in her blog post Saved by Ceasar.

Congratulations are in order for "Jay", a physician and blogger for Two Women Blogging, for her career move from Primary Care Physician to Hospice Medical Director. She tells of her career move in It's Official. Welcome to the wonderful world of hospice Jay! We know you'll find it challenging and deeply rewarding.

In another one of my favorite palliative care blogs, Risa's Pieces, Risa writes about the death of one of her patients. Risa illustrates the grief and regrets that all hospice workers feel at one time or another in her post He died. This morning. About 2am. In this post, Risa shows her true compassion and heart for hospice.

In the Pallimed Arts & Humanities blog, two interesting posts stood out last month. First, there's the Top 10 Palliative Care Songs. I can think of at least 3 songs I would add to that list and I'm sure you have your favorites. You can leave your own top picks in the comment section of the blog post. The second interesting post is Digital Afterlife which discusses the relatively new world of online memorials. Facebook pages and memorial websites make it easier than ever to pay tribute to lost friends and loved one.

How do you feel about the hospice cap? Pallimed wants to know and has a poll for readers to respond to. Don't know what the hospice cap is? You can learn more about it in the Pallimed post Hospice Cap-Opinion Poll. Pallimed also has another great post about an article in the New York Times and the increased attention NYT is paying to end-of-life care in End-of-Life Care in the NY Times (Again!).

One blog I'm a huge fan of is Life as a Hospice Patient. It feels a bit voyeuristic to read about Judi Chamberlin's day to day life as she battles her decline from COPD but it's real and moving. Her blog is a must-read for anyone who wants a first-hand account of life as a hospice patient. In a recent post Every Little Thing is an Effort, Judi talks about her further decline and frustration over her incontinence.

The New Health Dialogue has an excellent post by Joanne Kenen, Obama's Grandmother and the National Conversation. Joanne echoed my thoughts exactly when I read the interview with President Obama in the New York Times Magazine. An excellent and thought provoking post.

And perhaps my favorite blog post in the past month comes from Fresh Widow and her insight into how children grieve in her post What Short Stack Gets. Perhaps this hit a little too close to home for me since our children are the same age and trying to fathom explaining death to my daughter when she was 2 years old seems impossible to me. This post is insightful and sweet.

If that's not enough reading material for you, be sure to check out previous Palliative Care Grand Rounds for more. That's all for this edition of PCG. PCGR now has subscription options; you can follow by email or RSS feed. An aggregated feed of credible, rotating health and medicine blog carnivals is also available.

Next PGR will be out July 1st and hosting is Tim Cousounis of Palliative Care Success. Please email any submissions to Tim at tcousounis@digital-action.com

June 3, 2009 at 9:46 pm
(1) Risa Denenberg says:

Great work Angela! Thanks especially for introducing me to Fresh Widow.

June 4, 2009 at 11:17 am
(2) Gail Rae Hudson says:

Short and sweet! Thank you! Quick question, though: As of today, the link to the Fresh Widow post seems to be inoperative. I’m familiar with this blog; I’ve been an occasional visitor since my mother’s death and identify with a lot of what she writes…but couldn’t find the short stack post. I keep getting an error message from the post link (although not from the link to the blog) and a search of the blog doesn’t seem to pull up anything.
Could it be my computer? Thanks for checking on this.

June 4, 2009 at 1:51 pm
(3) dying says:

Thanks Risa and Gail. As for the Short Stack post, I’m not sure what happened to it but it appears it’s no longer there. Perhaps the author deleted it or some other error occurred. It’s really too bad, it was an excellent post about how children perceive death over a period of time.

June 4, 2009 at 4:07 pm
(4) dying says:

Good news! “What Short Stack Gets” is back up and the link is working.

June 6, 2009 at 12:48 am
(5) Jessica Knapp says:

Great job! So glad PCGR is exposing me to so many great bloggers.

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