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Sound Medicine: November 9, 2014

This week, Sound Medicine host Barbara Lewis and Dr. Rich Frankel, Director of the IU Walther Palliative Care Research and Education Program, pick the brains of palliative care authors and experts: Gail Sheehy, who wrote “Passages in Caregiving: Turning Chaos Into Confidence”; Mark Nepo, a cancer survivor and New York Times best-selling author and poet; and Dr. Timothy Quill, the Director of the Center for Ethics, Humanities and Palliative Care at the University of Rochester School of Medicine.

Journalist Gail Sheehy, who also authored "Daring: My Passages, A Memoir," shares what it's like to be a caregiver. She cared for her husband, New York magazine founder Clay Felker, until he passed away from throat cancer.

“I then had to really make a decision: Could I go through this? Could I keep going?”

Poet and philosopher Mark Nepo, a cancer survivor, speaks on the importance of communication between caregivers and patients. 

“A paradox for all healers is how to keep hearts open and tender without drowning in their pain. If I don’t open my heart, I’m a handler, not a healer.”

Palliative care expert Dr. Timothy Quill explains the misconceptions of palliative care, why he decided to enter the field and more. 

“If people think we’re end-of-life care, they’re not going to want to see us. We want them to feel good, live as long as they can.”

The interviewees will also speak at the following events: 

  • IU Walther Program Palliative Care Symposium Nov. 17-18, at the IUPUI Campus Center, which is hosted by the Mary Margaret Walther Program in Palliative Care Research and Education. More information about the event
  • Spirit and Place event Nov. 16, from 4-5:30 p.m. at the Christian Theological Seminary Shelton Auditorium. More information about the event