bertman lecture
Aging and the Ageless Spirit: Images, Insights and Illuminations
Materials ranging in tone from Jacque Brel and the Beatles to childrens’ literature, depictions from pop-culture, the visual and poetic arts expose and explore the agonies and ecstasies of aging.

“The Many Faces of Creativity in Later Life,” Boston Society for Gerontological Psychiatry, MA

Keynote Address, Georgia Gerontology Society, 46th Annual Conference, Columbus, GA

“Spiritual Eldering: Evidence-Based Protocols Proscribed by Childrens’ Literature,” Recuperative Centre, Jamaica Plain, MA

“Last Acts: Meaning-Making at the End of Life," Plenary Address, Issues in Gerontological Care, Contemporary Forums Conference, Orlando, FL

“And God Created Women,” Opening Plenary, Women in Thanatology, Cullowee, North Carolina

“Facelifts and Tummy Tucks: Cosmetic Surgery and Other Attempts at Staying Young in an Aging Society,” American Society of Aging 42nd Annual Meeting, Anaheim, CA

Keynote Address, The Phenomenal Woman at 40 and Beyond: Growing Toward Excellence Conference, CAREing Ctr, Kennesaw State University, GA

“Aging:The Agony and the Ecstasy,” Visiting Nurse Alliance of Vermont and New Hampshire, Inc. 4th Annual Meeting, “Montshire Museum, Norwich, Vt

"Completing the Life Cycle: Issues of Death and Loss,” Keynote Address, GRECC Conference, Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center, Department of Veterans Affairs, Hilton Hotel, Gainesville, FL

Children, Families and Death: Insights, Hindsights and Illuminations
Families, however defined, can be torn apart or brought together when a member is facing terminal illness. Drawing heavily from the arts and humanities as well as from clinical material, the following presentations explore the manifestations and healing power of grief when a child, sibling or parent is dying.

"I Forgot to Sing Her a Lullaby: Children, Family and Death,"
Pediatric Grand Rounds, UMass Medical School, Worcester;
Rhode Island Hospital, Providence;
Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, Glasgow, Scotland

2nd International Conference on Children and Death, Edinburgh University, Scotland. Daily Opening Plenary Presentations:
(1) "Sibling Concerns: Spoken and Unspoken, Blatant and Secret"
(2) "The Death of a Child: Insights and Consolations from the Arts and Bereaved Parents"
(3) "Helping Children Cope: Timeless Strategies, Resources, and Concerns"

"Caring Through the Arts: Promises and Perils Post 9/11," Current Controversies in Ethics, Law and Nursing, New York University, NY

Psycho-Social Panel, SIDS International Conference, Rouen, France

"Grief in the Community: Responding to Loss," Keynote Address, Institute for Clinical Health Psychology & Family Loss Project, MSPPC, Newton MA

Diversity: From Awareness to Cultural Competence
Enormous differences in attitudes towards illness, death and the understanding of grief and bereavement exist in the cultures and affiliations of those assigned to our care. Although it is politically correct to encourage multicultural sensitivity, our reality too often falls short of our rhetoric. Furthermore, generalizations about any religion are problematic because religious beliefs evolve continuously to address changing cultural conditions. Striking variations in beliefs and rituals exist among practitioners of each of the world's religions.
This listing of illustrated lectures and workshops highlight the complexities of belief systems, concerns, consolations, and ways ethnicity may be obstacle or aid in our interactions.

"It's all about Shalom: Hope Healing and a Touch of Garlic," Rodef Shalom Temple, Pittsburgh, PA

"Examining End-of-Life Issues from Minority Perspectives," The Science and Ethics of Aging Well, Boston College Initiatives on Aging Conference, Newton, MA

"Using the Arts to Support Caregivers: In Theory and Practice," Forums in Osaka, Yamagata, Tokyo, Japan

"Memories, Meaning & Milestones: Helping Our Grieving Children in a Multicultural World," Friends Way Symposium, Rhode Island College, Providence, RI; Wheelock College, Boston, MA

"Living-Dying: Poised on the Hyphen," Moravian Theological Seminary, Bahnson Ctr, Bethlehem, PA

"The Healing Power of Hope and Grief: Reflections on an African Experience," Society for Arts in Healthcare, Orlando, FL.

Care at the End of Life: Suffering and the Healing Arts
Core principles of hospice and palliative medicine are now considered mainstream. These programs identify new models of care, define spirituality and hope in ways that transcend religious affiliation, and illuminate healing possibilities at the time of death.

"Spirituality: A Celebration of Life," Plenary addresses and workshops, New Zealand Annual Hospice Conference, Auckland, New Zeland

"Expressions of Suffering: Images Sacred and Profane," Plenary Presentation, 8th Annual Palliative Care Conference, Toronto, Ontario

"Last Acts: Old Paradoxes and New Paradigms," Keynote address, Palliative Care in the 21st Century, Swedish Covenant Hospital, Chicago

"Why the Arts?" How Humanities and Arts Can Enhance Palliative Care," Sheffield Univ., England

"Art and Medicine: Restoring the SOUL to Healthcare," Society for Arts in Healthcare, Providence, RI

"The Visual Arts: Windows on Suffering and the Human Spirit," Plenary, 13th International Congress on Care of the Terminally Ill, Montreal, Canada
International Society for the Advancement of Humanistic Studies in Medicine (ISFAHSIM), 28th Annual Meeting, Keystone, CO

"A Good Dying: Issues and Overview: Shaping Health Care for the Last Months of Life," Opening Speaker, Invitational Symposium, Sponsored by The Center to Improve Care of the Dying, The George Washington University, Corcoran Gallery of Art. DC

Palliative Care: In Theory and Practice
Aging, illness, dying, and grief are life-cycle processes not pathological events. Palliative care concerns not simply care of the physical body, but care of a person’s mind, spirit, heart and soul. These lectures are intended to broaden participants’ conceptual and practical understanding of holistic care through interactive and experiential engagement. Various handout materials, including current web resources, are provided to support participation and learning.

"Fantastic Voyage: A Journey Through the Mind/Body Connection," Featured Speaker, 2nd Annual Powell Psycho-oncology Symposium Morton Plant Cancer Center, Clearwater, FL

"Mortal Questions," The John Hazen White Honors Colloquium, University of Rhode Island, RI

"Living with Dying: Engaged Care to the Very End, and Then Some," Keynote Address, Northeast Regional Nurse Practitioner Association, Westford, MA

"Art in/of End-of-Life," Montifiore Grand Rounds, NY; Lahey Clinic, MA

Hospice Traditions: Sacred and Profane," Opening Plenary address, National Hospice Organization 19th Annual Symposium, Atlanta, GA

The 'Good' Death: Meaning-Making and Decision-Making at the End of Life
These provocative presentations illuminate the spiritual and practical concerns of end-of-life care in the new millennium. Changing perspectives on autonomy, assisted death, and the healing power of hope, humor, and grief will be illustrated.

Changing Essentials of 'Good Death' in the '90s," Keynote, Annual Texas/New Mexico Hospice

"Last Rights/Last Rites: Decision and Meaning Making at the End of Life," Plenary, National AIDS Social Work Conf, Philadelphia, PA; The College of Physicians of Philadelphia, PA

"Physician-Assisted Death: Implications for Patients, Care Providers and Society," Opening Reception Dinner Speaker, Fourth Annual National Health Forum: University of Florida, Amelia Island, FL

"Ars Moriendi: The 'Good' Death Then and Now," The Iris Fischer Lecture, Program for Humanities in Medicine, Yale Medical School, New Haven, CT

HIV/AIDS related:

"Birth, Sex, Drugs, and Death: Changing Images of AIDS," Keynote address, American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Washington, DC

"Last Rights/Last Rites: Decision and Meaning Making at the End of Life," Plenary, National AIDS Social Work Conf, Phila, PA

Keynote Address, National Association on HIV Over Fifty, (NAHOF), Scottsdale, AZ.
(click for review)

"From Botswana to I-TECH" International Training & Education Ctr on HIV, I-TECH, Invitational Meetings, Waltham, MA; San Francisco, CA

Course Modules and Semesters
UMass Medical School and Graduate School of Nursing

"On Dissection, Death and Dying "

"On Becoming a Physician"

"On Ethics and Decision Making"

"Death, Dying and Grief in Nursing Practice"

"Living with Chronic and Life-Threatening Illness"

Grand Rounds

Ethics Rounds: Lahey Clinic, MA; University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Shadyside, PA

"For What Is It To Die" Psychiatry Grand Rounds, Boston University School of Medicine

Fourth Annual David Hockberg Lecture, Day Kimball Hospital, Woodstock Inn. MA

"End of Life Care: Difficult Conversations," Kenneth B. Schwartz Rounds, MGH Institute of Health Professions, Charlestown, MA

"Beyond Biology: Old Paradoxes and New Paradigms," The Cowan Memorial Lectures in Humanistic Medicine, University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake.

Pediatrics Grand Rounds, Women and Infants Hospital of RI, Brown University School of Medicine, Providence, RI