Kaleidoscope, the annual palliative care conference organised by St Francis Hospice took place in Dublin Castle yesterday and today (June 2 & 3).

The conference which focuses on palliative care brought together delegates from Ireland, The UK, Australia, The USA and New Zealand.

Among the keynote speakers was Dr Michael Kearney whose address on ‘Being a healer’ drew upon greek mythology and Jungian archetypes in discussing the movement toward clinician self-awareness and fostering of the innate healing ability.  Dr David Oliviere of St Christopher’s Hospice addressed the resilience inherent to the spirit of palliative care.  Of the many speakers, a personal favourite had to be Dr Sinead Donnelly, palliative medicine consultant at Wellington Regional Hospital, New Zealand whose talk  ‘The Ends of the Earth: Cultural and Social Diversity in Palliative Care’ skillfully blended her own experience of adapting to practising in New Zealand with touching, beautifully detailed accounts of patients she had treated during her time in Wellington. Dr Donnelly closed the Wednesday afternoon session with the Irish premier of her documentary ‘Going home’, an intimate portrait of four families’ personal experiences of their loved ones death. The documentary distilled both the philosophy of palliative care to enable a ‘good death’ and the central theme of the conference; to promote connection and caring in palliative care practice.

Conference presentations and handouts are available HERE . Well done to the team at st Francis Hospice for a very well organised conference

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