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Kathy Foley—The Golden Rule 

Kathy Foley—The Golden Rule
Chapter:
Kathy Foley—The Golden Rule
Author(s):

Philip J Larkin

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198703310.003.0011
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date: 23 October 2020

As an international expert on the management of cancer pain, Kathy Foley needs no introduction to the palliative care community. Her extensive service to the development of palliative and end-of-life care as director of The Project on Death in America, her work for the World Health Organisation, and her leadership of the palliative care service in the Memorial Sloan Kettering Center give her a unique perspective on what it means to be a compassionate palliative care practitioner. Kathy Foley brings us to the root of compassion in action, arguing for a pragmatic and responsive approach to care which involves reaching the patient’s goals in a practical, competent, and skilled way. She argues that our patients deserve the very best of our care not only because of our shared humanity, but-as many world religions promote-because of the Golden Rule of not doing to others things you would not want for yourself. The Golden Rule is the essence of living compassionately. Through a clinical case which looks at a compassionate system rather than an individual, this chapter reminds us that compassion is not just a mission statement on the wall but an active involvement in the expression of being human.

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