The VUB Compassionate Communities centre of expertise (COCO) is pleased to invite you to their 5th open seminar. This seminar is entirely dedicated to the Lancet Commission's 2022 report on the Value of Death.
Death, dying, and loss are universal human experiences, but the contention of a new Lancet Commission is that they have become unfamiliar, disconnected, and unbalanced.
The story of dying in the 21st century is a story of paradox. COVID-19 has meant people have died the ultimate medicalised deaths, often alone in hospitals with little communication with their families. But in other settings, including in some lower income countries, many people remain undertreated, dying of preventable conditions and without access to basic pain relief. The unbalanced and contradictory picture of death and dying is the basis for the Lancet Commission on the Value of Death. Drawing on multidisciplinary perspectives from around the globe, the Commissioners argue that death and life are bound together: without death there would be no life. The Commission proposes a new vision for death and dying, with greater community involvement alongside health and social care services, and increased bereavement support.
In this seminar, we invite Lancet Commission members Dr. Libby Sallnow (UK) and Dr. Afsan Bhadelia (US) to guide us through the implications of their report and engage in discussion with us about the implications and value of death and end of life in our own disciplines, fields of work or sectors of society.
Dr. Libby Sallnow (MD, PhD) is a palliative care consultant, honorary clinical senior lecturer at St. Christopher's Hospice and UCL (UK), and a public health palliative care researcher connected to the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. She is also a member of the European Association for Palliative Care Reference Group on Public Health & Palliative Care and the vice-president of the world association Public Health Palliative Care International.
Dr. Afsan Bhadelia (PhD) is a health systems and disparities researcher. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Public Health within the College of Health and Human Sciences at Purdue University. She is a member of multiple Lancet Commission, including the Lancet Commission on the Value of Death and the Lancet Commission on Cancer and Health Systems. She is Visiting Scholar at the University of Miami Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas and a former Fulbright Scholar.
The seminar will take place on Monday 19 December 2022, from 15h to 16h30 (CET). It will be held digitally via Zoom. Participation is free, but registration is obligatory. There are 100 slots available. Those interested in joining can register via this link.
Ahead of this seminar, you can listen to their recent appearance on the Public Health Disrupted Podcast episode on ‘Dignity, decency and dying’. The report of the Lancet Commission on the Value of Death can be consulted here.
Dr. Libby Sallnow
Dr. Afsan Bhadelia