Why do we struggle to talk about death and how does that keep us from living? Does our discomfort around death impact on society and health? In this session we join a conversation with oncologist, Sam Guglani, and palliative care doctors, Kathryn Mannix and Rachel Clarke, as they think about death and dying.
Sam is a novelist, poet and Consultant Oncologist in Cheltenham. He has Masters degrees in Ethics (Keele, 2009) and Creative Writing (Oxford, 2014). He is the director of Medicine Unboxed, a project dedicated to illuminating the challenges and wonders of medicine through the arts. His debut novel, Histories, was published in 2017.
Kathryn is a Palliative Care Consultant and author who wants to break the taboos surrounding death. Her book, With the End in Mind (2019), explores the process of dying and how to live well and experience ‘a good death’. Here are the five key things that Kathryn has observed at death beds throughout her career.
Rachel is a physician specialising in palliative care for the NHS. She’s also an activist and the author of Dear Life: A Doctor’s Story of Love and Loss (2020). Her new book, Breathtaking, describes her experiences of caring for the most gravely unwell patients on the Covid-19 wards of her hospital. Rachel retrained as a doctor in 2009 after a career in journalism, and firmly believes there is a good way to approach end-of-life care. Read a Guardian interview with Rachel here.