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Breast Cancer Treatment v. Palliative Care

The agenda for “Engaging the Next Generation” The First National Symposium on Academic Palliative Care Education and Research has been framed to escort faculty attendees through a progression of stories, suggestions, and skills to incorporate palliative care concepts into their teaching and research agendas.

The Symposium will begin with a story of palliative care described by a nurse, senior program officer of the John A. Hartford Foundation, and five-year survivor of invasive breast cancer treated only with palliative care. Amy Berman, BSN, LHD, was asked by the Institute to share her story of conversations, choices, and life having chosen palliative care over the traditional forms of aggressive breast cancer treatment.

Ms. Berman has told her story to the nation through numerous speaking engagements and publications. In September this past year, to address the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid’s (CMS) deliberations when finalizing payment decisions for advance care planning discussions, she wrote an open letter to the regulators in an article published in the Washington Post.

Ms. Berman’s statement to CMS in her letter underscores the purpose of her work, and that of the Symposium in advancing palliative care conversations: “When done well, they can shape care in ways that give people with serious illness a chance at getting the best life possible.” This, enabling students, professionals, the community to learn from faculty leaders and researchers what they need to know to have these conversations, is a key reason the Symposium is being convened by the CSU Shiley Institute for Palliative Care, and why Ms. Berman is providing the opening, thought-provoking keynote address at the Symposium.

For more information about the Symposium, the agenda, and to register, see the CSU Shiley Institute for Palliative Care Symposium’s web page at

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