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photo Grave Words
Tools for Discussing End of Life Choices
By Maren Monsen, MD

Talking with patients about end-of-life care decisions is a challenge for many physicians and healthcare providers. Produced by a physician, this video takes a unique approach to this topic by blending humor, music, and insightful interviews to confront the issues that arise in these discussions. Nationally recognized experts offer their counsel in dealing with these issues and a reenacted "ideal conversation" between a physician and a terminally ill patient provides a model for doctors in carrying out these conversations in their own practices.

25 minutes
© 1996
Purchase $199 DVD
Order No. QA-224
ISBN (DVD) 1-57295-865-0

"Combines light-hearted scenarios of poor to absurd communications with patients on issues of death and dying, with measured advice from physicians expert in such communications. Cultural sensitivity is briefly discussed, with an emphasis on respecting the patient's individuality rather than assuming a fit within cultural expectations." Literature, Arts, and Medicine Database

Awards & Conference Screenings
First Place, Intl. Health & Medical Film Festival
Second Place, Association for Death Education & Counseling
Bronze Apple, National Educational Media Network
Silver Medal, CINDY Competition
Gold Medal, Regional Cinema in Industry Competition
Silver Medal, International Cinema in Industry Competition

Related Films
More than a Failing Heart: Family members describe examples of the best of end-of-life care, and of the worst, and reveal how competent and compassionate physicians and nurses can change the end-of-life experience.

Caring at the End of Life — with related study films: This three-part series deals with end-of-life care and decision making in the hospital, through profiles of several severely ill patients and the staff who deal with them.

Still Life: Explores the emotional relationship between medical students in anatomy courses and the cadavers which make it possible for them to learn about the human body. The film includes a discussion of body donation.

The Right to Decide: Informed by the Patient Self-Determination Act, these outstanding physician-patient interviews explore patients' hopes, fears, and goals regarding end-of-life care.


Awards & Screenings

Related Films

Study Guide

Web Resources

To rent or purchase this film, please visit the Icarus Films website