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Leaders in the Patient Experience: Ellen Goodman, The Conversation Project

Posted on 09/27/2012

The Association for Patient Experience: The Conversation Project, headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and launched and co-founded by journalist and Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Ellen Goodman, grew out of Goodman’s experience with her mother’s death. “My mother and I talked about everything,” she says, “but when she was no longer able to make her own decisions, I realized we hadn’t talked about her wishes for the end of her life. I understood only after her death how much easier it would have been if I had heard her voice in my ear as these decisions had to be made.” Goodman is now deeply aware of the importance of having end of life discussions with loved ones so that the experience of death can be good for all involved. The difference between a good death and a bad death, she learned, is whether a person’s wishes have been expressed and respected, no matter what those wishes are.

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