You are currently browsing the archives for the history of palliative medicine category.

The birth of the Oxford Textbook of Palliative Medicine

Published on: Author: David Clark Leave a comment

Being taken round a New Zealand hospice I was amused and, let’s admit it, thrilled to see a well-worn copy of the book, its hard cover almost falling off. “Well used !” I said to the doctor. “ Yes indeed” he said:  “perfect for holding up the old piano!” Thankfully he then pointed to two… 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

When palliative medicine became a specialty – by Derek Doyle

Published on: Author: David Clark 7 Comments

The University of Glasgow awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Science to Derek Doyle, one of the pioneers of modern palliative care, in July 2014.  Since then Dr Doyle has been a popular and regular contributor to our blog. Here he blogs about the origins of palliative medicine as a specialty. Some readers may… Continue reading

Founding the Association for Palliative Medicine of Great Britain and Ireland – by Derek Doyle

Published on: Author: David Clark Leave a comment
Derek Doyle 9 July 2014

The 1970s and 1980s saw palliative care services starting all over Britain – hospices and NHS ‘continuing care units’, day units, home care services, hospital consultation services, ‘hospice at home’. Those were undeniably exciting times but they brought many problems and challenges. Where were the trained staff? There were no plans or policies in place… 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

Prepared to be different? By Derek Doyle

Published on: Author: David Clark Leave a comment
Dr Derek Doyle

In previous posts I have told how exciting it was when the ‘pioneers’ of hospice/palliative care realised that, much as they thought they were introducing something new to patient care, they were in fact pleading for recognition and acceptance of the most basic, undeniable, ages-old features of compassionate care. Cynics described that as  ‘reinventing the… Continue reading

Death, Dying, and Bereavement: new book edited by Judith Stillion and Thomas Attig

Published on: Author: David Clark Leave a comment

Thanks to David Clark for allowing us to introduce readers of his blog to our recent publication entitled Death, Dying, and Bereavement: Contemporary Perspectives, Institutions, and Practices. Written by luminaries who have shaped the field, this capstone book distills the collective wisdom of foremost scholars and practitioners who together have nearly a millennium of experience… Continue reading