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Interview with David Oliviere

In this interview David talks about how In palliative care social work 'Time is a question of depth and not length'. His first story about social pain at the end of life (4), is about a Moroccan woman with advanced breast cancer, who had decided to go back to Morocco to be with her family when she was dying. Her partner, in the UK, could not afford to go to Morocco to be with her or to attend her funeral. David wasn't able to find any funding to help him. 'To this day I still nurse some of his pain'.

In the last part of the interview, David reflects about what he learned from a cat about the ethics of truth-telling, 'Once I started to lie it was difficult to say anything else.'

1. What are the needs for palliative care education and training?

2. What are the priorities?

3. What are the different ways in which social pain can manifest at the end of life? 

4. Can you tell me some stories about social pain? 

5. A story about truth-telling and a cat called Pickles

David Oliviere has a background in psychiatric social work as well as palliative care. He will retire in November 2013 as Director of Education at St Christopher's hospice. Along the way, David has contributed many chapters, articles and books on palliative care, including jointly edited collections with Barbara Monroe, “Patient Participation in Palliative Care: a voice for the voiceless”; and “Resilience and Palliative Care. Achievement in adversity”. “Narrative and Stories in Health Care. Illness, death and bereavement” with Yasmin Gunaratnam.

A second edition of “Death, Dying and Social Differences” is his latest edited book (OUP) with Barbara Monroe and Sheila Payne.