"Life Before Death….?"

Join us at University of Victoria for the viewing of the film: LIFE BEFORE DEATH – HOW WILL YOU DIE?

Thanks  for the invitation to join the panel discussion..Looking forward to it.


Life Before Death is a multi-award winning documentary series that asks the fundamental question underpinning our mortality.

This beautifully filmed journey takes us to 11 countries as we follow remarkable health professionals battling the sweeping epidemic of pain that threatens to condemn one in every ten of us to an agonizing and shameful death. Through the eyes of patients and their families we discover the inherent humanity that empowers the best of us to care for those beyond cure.  An intimate, hopeful and life-affirming story of living well and dying better, through advocating for making the most of every moment in our life before death.   For sample clips see http://www.lifebeforedeath.com/movie/short-films.shtml

WHEN:              7:00 p.m., June 14, 2012

WHERE:             University of Victoria, Medical Sciences Bldg. Rm. 150 Lecture Theatre,                                        http://www.uvic.ca/assets/documents/pdfs/2D-Campus-Map.pdf

HOSTED BY:     University of Victoria Health Ethics and Law                                        (HEaL).  Welcome to our launch event!

PANEL DISCUSSION TO FOLLOW:  Facilitated by Dr. Fraser Black

COST: Free or by donation to the Victoria Hospice Twinning Fund

FOR MORE INFORMATION and to RSVP: susan@thebreiddals.com

Teaching and Learning in Nepal

We all need to be heard and understood/

Once again I contemplate that we are more the same than we are different…. this time, when it comes to learning.

My reflective writing reads:  When it comes to learning:

  1. We all need to be understood and to be heard.
  2. We all need to understand the language and the content.
  3. We all need to be inspired.
  4. We all benefit when learning is enjoyable!

Though there are time when we learn when these needs are not met, or not important… my bias is that these help prepare and open the individual to learning.  And, no matter which culture we work in, we can facilitate learning if we remember these points.


My experiences at the workshop on Advancing Hospice Palliative Care in Nepal

Welcome to the colours of Kathmandu!

Colourful dyes in Khatmandu

Colourful dyes in Khatmandu

In Katmandhu on April 7 & 8th, nurses, doctors, a dietician, educators, a few community members, and a government representative gathered for two days of presentations and brainstorming to discuss the future of HPC in Nepal. This workshop was sponsored by the Nepal Association of Palliative Care, and the International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research (INCTR).

The presentations were inspiring,  the people are inspiring.

At the conference, participants were talking about:

  • the need for a national hospice palliative care policy,
  • the man who opened the doors to getting Morphine manufactured in Nepal (vs having to purchase through India) who updated participants on opioid availability,
  • two remarkable presentations on PC education in medical and nursing education.

I find it difficult to share what I am hearing, as i am not sure if I have the details all correct, and there is soooo much to write, where do I even begin?

Twinning projects in hospice palliative care in Nepal?

There are six hospices in Nepal.  I visited Bharatpur at the National Cancer Hospital last week, about a 30 min flight from Kathmandu (the drive is anywhere from 4 to 14 hours!) Bharatpur has twinned with Victoria Hospice , and they just renewed their twinning agreement to work together in sharing knowledge of hospice palliative care.

Twinning Project for Nanaimo and Nepali Hospices

Victoria Hospice and Bharatpur Cancer hospital renew twinning agreement

Today we go to Bhaktapur Hospice, just half an hour from here.  Nanaimo Hospice has been twinning with Bhaktapur hospice for over five years now. In both cases, the twinning project has fostered relationships, sharing of learning, and strengthening of programs.

While we are here members of the Nanaimo Hospice team will work on the hospice unit with the Nepali staff  and lead an 8 day workshop.

At the request of the Nanaimo team, we are adapting the “Essentials in hospice palliative care” text and companion study guide.  I have come to participate in the piloting of these materials with the nurses.  This is a wonderful experience  for me, and I am thrilled.


Meeting LDM Online Students in person!

A few of the Life and Death Matters international students

I have also had the incredible opportunity to meet several of the students who have taken online courses with us at Life and Death Matters.  How profound to meet them in person!!!







Life Matters! – Visiting and Sightseeing

Meanwhile, as all this is happening, we have visited a few Hindu sites, witnessed cremations in holy places, and bathe in the beauty of the Nepali people.

Life and Death Matters visits Nepal

A man praying