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Philip J Larkin—Conclusion: lessons from our teachers 

Philip J Larkin—Conclusion: lessons from our teachers
Chapter:
Philip J Larkin—Conclusion: lessons from our teachers
Author(s):

Philip J Larkin

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198703310.003.0021
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date: 30 October 2020

This chapter draws together the reflections, views, thoughts, and examples of compassion in palliative and end-of-life care practice presented through a series of interviews with an international group of expert clinicians. Based on wider literature and policy frameworks, three questions were asked of the clinicians: the meaning of compassion, how it is demonstrated, and how it can be sustained for the future of the discipline. In this chapter it is concluded that compassion is visible in practice, can be demonstrated in practice, and is a framework from which practitioners engage. Notwithstanding the challenges faced by clinicians in contemporary practice-not to mention the demands of the public for better quality care-there is evidence that the foundation of practice laid down by the founder of the modern palliative care movement, Dame Cicely Saunders, is relevant to the sustaining of the principles of practice for future generations of palliative care health professionals. The need for an ongoing discourse in relation to way in which technology and clinical advancement can develop freely and yet uphold the founding principles of palliative care is also addressed. The chapter does not offer solutions to the problems raised. Rather it affords a starting point for a wider debate about the place of palliative and end-of-life care within mainstream care as the ideal of service development.

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