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A symposium on the life and work of Cicely Saunders (Un simposio sobre la vida y el trabajo de Cicely Saunders)

Published on: Author: David Clark 2 Comments
Martina Holder Franz, Enric Benito, David Clark, Isabel Neto, Carlos Centeno (L-R) at the Hospital San Juan de Dios, Pamplona

Can you imagine fifty medical students and fifty palliative care practitioners giving up what might be the last warm, sunny Saturday of the year to attend a symposium about someone who was born ninety seven years ago? The attendees’ attraction and motivation would have to be high. And so they were on 17 October at… Continue reading

La influencia de Cicely Saunders en los profesionales de cuidados paliativos (Dr Carlos Centeno on the influence of Cicely Saunders)

Published on: Author: guwebteam Leave a comment
Dr Carlos Centeno Cortés

Carlos Centeno remembers his first meeting with Cicely Saunders in her famous collection The Management of Terminal Malignant Disease. He describes the influence of that book  in his decision to become a palliative care doctor and the later influence of another meeting in another of Cicely´s books: Watch with Me. This reflection illustrates the influences she has had,… Continue reading

Hear Cicely Saunders in her final recorded interview with Professor David Clark

Published on: Author: David Clark 1 Comment
Dame Cicely Saunders, photographed during her final interview with David Clark, March 2005

Dame Cicely Saunders died at St Christopher’s Hospice on 14 July 2005, at the age of 87.  This is an interview I recorded with her just a few months earlier. I first met Dame Cicely in 1995 and over the next decade we worked together on various projects. She was a keen supporter of my work… Continue reading

Dr Saunders and Dr Rustomjee – an early example of #hpmglobal

Published on: Author: David Clark 3 Comments

  Just before Easter 1961, Cicely Saunders sat down to send greetings to a colleague. It was someone who shared her interests in developing special facilities and approaches for the care of the dying – especially those with advanced cancer. Nothing unusual in that. She was now getting into her stride with a growing ambition… Continue reading

Celebrating the life of Cicely Saunders on International Women’s Day – by David Clark

Published on: Author: David Clark 10 Comments

Cicely Saunders was born in North London on 22 June 1918, the first of three children and the only daughter to Gordon and Chrissie Saunders. Her father was a successful estate agent and as his prosperity grew, the family enjoyed a range of middle class material comforts, living at Hadley Green among gardens, tennis courts… Continue reading

A Christmas letter from Cicely Saunders, 50 years ago today (22 December 1964)

Published on: Author: David Clark 6 Comments

One of the more pleasurable academic tasks I have ever undertaken was to edit the letters of Cicely Saunders, in a collection published by Oxford University Press, in 2002.  The volume of her selected letters (1959-99) contains some 700 pieces, chosen from over 7,000 to be found among her papers. I continue to enjoy dipping… Continue reading

‘Total pain’: the work of Cicely Saunders and the maturing of a concept

Published on: Author: David Clark 2 Comments

A striking feature of Cicely Saunders’ early work was its articulation of the relationship between physical and mental suffering. This reached full expression with the concept of ‘total pain’, which was taken to include physical symptoms, mental distress, social problems and emotional difficulties.  The idea was launched on the world exactly 50 years ago, in… Continue reading

Two reports that shaped the history of end of life care in the United Kingdom – by David Clark

Published on: Author: David Clark 3 Comments

The UK welfare state upon its creation in 1948  sought to vouchsafe care ‘from the cradle to the grave’, yet the early years of the National Health Service saw little attention to care at the end of life and focused instead on addressing the widespread acute and chronic health problems of a society grappling with… Continue reading