Sunday, May 15, 2016

No getting around it: death is hard

We cannot remove the pain of loss. Death—whether of patients or of loved ones—will always be difficult. We can create reforms, we can institute policy changes, and we can even write books. But our professional fear and aversion to dying is the most difficult—and most fundamentally human—obstacle in changing end-of-life care. Our grief is the price we pay for caring for the terminally ill, and our aversion is the weight that anchors our inertia and denia.
Pauline W. Chen, Final Exam: A Surgeon's Reflections on Mortality  (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2007), Epilogue

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