“You matter because you are you.” – Dame Cicely Saunders
Dame Cicely Saunders, founder of the modern hospice movement and St Christopher’s Hospice in the UK, died ten years ago today. This remarkable lady, who was trained as a nurse, social worker and doctor, died on 14 July 2005, at the age of 87 in her own St Christopher’s Hospice.
As well as being a one-woman multidisciplinary team, Dame Cicely was an excellent teacher and mentor, guiding those we know today as worldwide leaders in hospice and palliative care.
She was also a prolific writer, publishing books, letters and academic journal articles, some of which are freely available online, while much of the rest is housed in an archive of materials – co-curated by Professor David Clark – at the Cicely Saunders Institute in London, or in the Library at St Christopher’s Hospice.
As well as containing the results of her research, through her academic writing we can trace a history of Dame Cicely’s working life. In her article, The evolution of palliative care, she outlines the evidence base that was the start of her early research on the final stage of life, mainly of cancer patients…read more