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Educational Conferences & Presentations

Dartmouth-Hitchcock offers educational conferences that are both palliative medicine specific, and part of the Internal Medicine, Pediatric, or Geriatric specialties.

The sections below highlight the recommended and required educational conferences and presentations for an example fellowship year.

Recommended opportunities

Geriatrics Grand Rounds

Varying geriatric topics, often including important palliative care and case discussions.

Schwartz Rounds (Adult and Pediatric)

Adult and pediatric case presentations with a focus on how caring for patients affects us and self-care. Run by Dr. Matt Wilson.

Required opportunities

Palliative Medicine Core Didactics

  • Intro to Fellowship
  • Intro to Hospice and Palliative Medicine
  • Pain Management Basics
  • Dyspnea and Cough
  • PCA Management
  • Adjuncts for Pain Management
  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Delirium
  • Deactivation of AICD/PPMs
  • Hospice 101
  • Imminent Death Syndrome
  • Withdrawal of the Ventilator
  • Methadone
  • Medical Marijuana
  • Substance Use Disorder in HPM, Part 1 and 2
  • Urine toxicology Interpretation
  • Non-Oral Routes of EOL Medications
  • Bereavement Risk Assessment and Grief
  • Hope and Denial at EOL
  • Anxiety/Depression at EOL
  • ADs: History and Ethics
  • ADs: A Practical Approach
  • Artificial Hydration and Nutrition
  • Requests for Hastened Death
  • Palliative Sedation
  • Subanesthetic Dosing of Ketamine
  • How to Run an IDT (followed by session on "IDT Check In" and "Take Home Points")
  • Understanding Complex and Common Family Dynamics
  • Legacy Building
  • Medication Assisted Treatment ECHO series
  • Miracles
  • Prognostication
  • Healing Arts
  • Consult Etiquette in Hospice and Palliative Care
  • How to Teach - Tips and Tricks in Palliative Care
  • Neuropathic Pain
  • Billing in Hospice and Palliative Medicine
  • The Business of Hospice and Palliative Medicine
  • POLST Completion

Palliative Care Team Weekly Educational Conference

  • Fellow Presentations
  • Regional Hospice and Palliative Care Video Case Conferences
  • Research In Progress
  • Professional Development in Education
  • Section Meetings
  • Journal Clubs
  • Visiting Discussants

Communication Sessions

Our fellowship offers an intentional and longitudinal communication training program.

Our curriculum utilizes role play, drills, and VitalTalk-powered communication coaching to teach progressive communication skills.

We use the Serious Illness Conversation Guide as a scaffold and work on specialty-specific skills that will allow fellows to excel in serious illness communication both clinically and academically.

Lastly, we assure fellows learn the principles and practice of being a communication coach to help educator others.

2020-21 Communication Training Series Sessions

  • Holding Space
  • Recognizing Information vs Emotional Cues
  • Responding to Emotions
  • Responding to Emotions in the Resistant Patient
  • Serious Illness Conversation Guide (SICG) Training
  • SICG – Setting Up the Conversation
  • SICG – Understanding of Illness
  • SICG - Discussing Prognosis
  • SICG – Goals Elicitation Part 1
  • Goals Elicitation Part 2: Wise Mind and Listening for Inferences
  • SICG – Making a Recommendation
  • How to Run a Family Meeting: Taking all Perspectives into Account
  • Responding to Patients who Believe in Miracles
  • Responding to Patients who Request Hastened Death
  • Bedside Coaching Skills for Communication Educators (powered by VitalTalk) – 3 workshops on Pre-Briefing, Stepping In and Handing It Back, and De-Briefing

Narrative Medicine Sessions

Regular sessions occur throughout the year during which learners come together with faculty to read short texts — including poems, excerpts from fiction and art — and respond to writing prompts. The sessions are designed to promote development of narrative skills that enable more effective "reading" of patients and their families. Sessions also allow fellows to practice reflection, perspective taking, and develop comfort with ambiguity and uncertainty.

Our Narrative Medicine sessions are facilitated by Dr. Kirkland who has extensive training in Narrative Medicine. Other team members, including our creative writer, contribute frequently.

M and M Medicine Conference

A weekly, interactive, quality improvement conference that often covers important end of life topics, challenging decision making, and communication issues. Internal Medicine residents present, and Dartmouth-Hitchcock faculty discuss the issues that arise.

Medical Grand Rounds

Varying medical and subspecialty topics.

Program Director Meetings

Held approximately every other month, Program Director meetings are designed to elicit feedback about the program from fellows. The program director will:

  • communicate feedback, received from program faculty, to the fellow
  • plan for talks, journal clubs or scholarly/QI activities
  • review patient logs and examine gaps in patient experience
  • and offer personal reflection about the impact this work has on the fellow

Job counseling will occur during this meeting, usually around mid-year.

Self-Care Sessions

As a group, fellows meet with our team’s psychosocial-spiritual providers in a design akin to a balint group. The purpose is to support the fellow as they grow into the role of a hospice and palliative medicine clinician. This serves as a time to reflect on the experience of training in this specialty and understand the meaning and impact it has on us professionally and personally.

Wisdom Wednesdays

We spend 30 minutes of our interdisciplinary team meeting every Wednesday in a facilitated team discussion about a communication encounter that brought us to our learning edge. Both fellows or interdisciplinary faculty present, think through differentials, and brainstorm new communication strategies or skills with the larger team.

Tumor Board Tuesday

We spend 15 minutes of our interdisciplinary meeting every Tuesday considering a current challenging case that we can have a more in-depth discussion about and get real-time input from various disciplines for next steps. Like a tumor board at a cancer center, we hope these recommendations can be put to use by clinicians after the meeting. Discussions often times focus on symptom management, system issues, or brainstorming resources.

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