Thursday, March 7

SESSION 1     |     8:30-10:15 a.m.
Keynote Lecture
CEH: 1.5 hours

THE LOST ART OF DYING:  LESSONS FROM A PANDEMIC

Speaker:  Lydia Dugdale, M.D., M.A.R.

About The Speaker

Lydia Dugdale, M.D., M.A.R., Professor of Medicine and Director of Clinical Ethics

Lydia Dugdale, MD, MAR (ethics), is the Dorothy L. and Daniel H. Silberberg Professor of Medicine at the Columbia University Medical Center and Director of the Center for Clinical Medical Ethics. She also serves as Co-Director of Clinical Ethics at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Irving Medical Center.

 

Speaker Bio >
 

 

About the Lecture

THE LOST ART OF DYING:  LESSONS FROM A PANDEMIC

The COVID-19 pandemic brought death into relief in unprecedented ways. But are we prepared to die? This talk offers lessons gleaned from a fourteenth-century pandemic to show how the art of dying well is really the art of living.

Centuries ago, in the wake of the Bubonic Plague, a text was published offering advice to help the living prepare for a good death. Written during the late Middle Ages, the ars moriendi—Art of Dying—made clear that to die well, one had to live well and described what practices best help us prepare. When Dr. Dugdale discovered this medieval book, it was a revelation. Inspired by its holistic approach to the final stage we must all one day face, she drew from this forgotten work, to write a new ars moriendi, The Lost Art of Dying: Reviving Forgotten Wisdom.

In her presentation, Dr. Dugdale will provide thoughtful guidance that will change our perceptions. By recovering our sense of finitude, confronting our fears, accepting how our bodies age, developing meaningful rituals and involving our communities in end-of-life care, we can discover what it means both to live and die well. Dr. Dugdale offers a hopeful perspective on death and dying as she shows us how to adapt the wisdom from the past to our lives today. Hers is vital, affecting work that reconsiders death, death culture and how we can transform how we live each day, including our last.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to:

  • Describe how people refuse to face human finitude and how this affects dying well.
  • Consider a medieval model for the preparation for death.
  • Describe how it might be possible to revive this medieval model today.

 

 


10:15-10:45 a.m.
Break

 


CONCURRENT SESSIONS – 2A, 2B, 2C:  CHOOSE ONE

SESSION 2A     |     10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Lecture

CEH: 1.5 hours

BLACK HEALTH AND THE NARRATIVE OF HEALTH EQUITY

Speaker:  Keisha Ray, Ph.D.

About the Speaker

Keisha Ray, Ph.D., Associate Professor at McGovern Center for Humanities & Ethics

Associate Professor at McGovern Center for Humanities & Ethics at UT Health Houston, recipient of the John P. McGovern, MD Professorship in Oslerian Medicine and Director of the Medical Humanities Scholarly Concentration

 

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About the Lecture

BLACK HEALTH AND THE NARRATIVE OF HEALTH EQUITY

What can Black Americans' health tell us about what more equitable access to health should look like? For example, what should the narrative about Black Maternal Mortality include? Or the narrative about COVID-19, Black boys and asthma?

What does Black Americans' health say about health equity in the USA? What does Black Americans' health say about scholars’ work in health equity in the USA? How do we influence our health care systems and government entities to think of health equity, including its threats in more interconnected ways?

  • Partnerships outside and within the academy,
  • Intersectionality at the forefront,
  • Question and possibly change values and how we convey those values,
  • Public scholarship,
  • Prepare students and trainees for government and public sector jobs,
  • More humanities in health sciences centers.

How do we empower patients and future patients to be their own and other people’s health advocates? How do we influence health care organizations to take up this work?

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to:

  • Understand how we influence our health care systems and government entities to think of health equity, including its threats in more interconnected ways?
  • Understand how to empower patients and future patients to be their own and other people’s health advocates?
  • Understand how to influence health care organizations to take up this work?

 

 


SESSION 2B     |    10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Virtual Lecture

CEH: 1.5 hours

AGING AS A SPIRITUAL PRACTICE

Speaker:  Lewis Richmond

About the Speaker

LEWIS RICHMOND

Buddhist minister and author

 

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About the Lecture

AGING AS A SPIRITUAL PRACTICE

Many people experience aging as a time of diminishment and loss. But aging can also be a time of inner development and transformation. Richmond’s Buddhist teacher Shunryu Suzuki once said, “We meditate to enjoy our old age.”  That teaching is the inspiration of his award winning book Aging as a Spiritual Practice: A Contemplative Guide to Growing Older and Wiser. This seminar will teach attendees themes and meditations from that book to help them enjoy their old age and experience ways aging can be a spiritual practice.

We begin our exploration by considering the question of time. Time is the essence of aging. When we are older, we have the sense that we have lived a long time, that time seems to be going faster, or that we are running out of time. These feelings are a kind of illusion. The reality is that young or old, we only truly age as we always have, one breath at a time—no slower, no faster. In the practice of Aging One Breath at a Time, we tune into our breath, in and out, experiencing our aging one breath at a time, liberating us from the sense that time is running out. The breath really doesn’t age; from birth to death each breath occurs inside its own ageless time.

Another way to counteract the sense of loss in aging is to open yourself to gratitude and kindness, developing an appreciation of each moment as valuable and precious. Richmond will introduce participants to the Loving Kindness Prayer as well as the Gratitude Walk—two meditations you can do anywhere to refresh your enjoyment of life. And last, Richmond will guide participants through a multi-part practice Richmond calls Vertical Time, a visualization which compares our usual “horizontal” sense of time - a line stretching from past and into the future - with the constancy and stability of the present moment, which is actually timeless and ageless.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to:

  • Understand what it means to “enjoy your old age.”
  • Have a new appreciation of the opportunities for transformation and growth that aging brings.
  • Continue to cultivate these meditation practices on your own to become, “older and wiser.”

 

 


SESSION 2C     |    10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Lecture

CEH: 1.5 hours

PASSING THROUGH THE GATES OF HOLINESS:  DEUTERONOMY 30:19 AS A GUIDE TO LIFE’S THIRD AND FOURTH STAGES

Speaker:  Rabbi Richard F. Address, D. Min.

About the Speaker

RABBI RICHARD F. ADDRESS, D. MIN

Founder and director of Jewish Sacred Aging

 

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About the Lecture

PASSING THROUGH THE GATES OF HOLINESS:  DEUTERONOMY 30:19 AS A GUIDE TO LIFE'S THIRD AND FOURTH STAGES

The revolution on longevity has provided many with gifts never before experienced. It has also provided us with new challenges. As we live longer and, we hope for better, we experience newlife stages. Realities such as time, mortality and legacy take on greater relevance. In this discussion we will look at the sacred text as we unpack some of the text's messages that relate to our own spiritual journey. How do we make choices that sanctify life? What about the ever present reality of time? How can we understand the power and significance of our choices? What of the role of randomness in our choices? As we age, how can we begin to answer what life is asking of each of us?

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to: 

  • Examine the myth of control in our lives.
  • Contemplate the role of choice and a theory of choice drawn from the text.
  • Understand and accept the tension of holding on and letting go: mortality

 

 


12:15-1:30 p.m.
Lunch
Registration is required.

 


SESSION 3     |     1:30-3:00 p.m.
Lecture 
CEH: 1.5 hours

HERE BUT NOT HERE:  TENDING TO AMBIGUOUS LOSSES IN UNCERTAIN TIMES

Speaker:  Carla Dahl, Ph.D.

About the Speaker

CARLA DAHL, PH.D., Professor Emeritus

Professor Emeritus of Congregational and Community Care Leadership and George C. Weinman Chair of Pastoral Theology Luther Seminary

 

 

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About the Lecture

HERE BUT NOT HERE:  TENDING TO AMBIGUOUS LOSSES IN UNCERTAIN TIMES

Ambiguous losses are perhaps the most challenging kind of loss. When someone or something is physically absent yet psychologically present, or physically present yet psychologically absent, it’s hard to find clarity, it’s hard to make decisions, and it’s hard to grieve. The physical, emotional, economic and relational uncertainty lingering at this point in the COVID-19 pandemic further complicates ambiguous loss. In such times of stress and change, the idea that we might somehow find “closure” is enticing, suggesting that it might be possible to end or at least short-circuit pain. However, appealing that might seem, it’s a myth. We are better served by learning to tolerate ambiguity, to hold paradox, to make meaning. In this workshop, we’ll examine the nature of ambiguous loss, explore research-based guidelines for working with individuals and families experiencing ambiguous losses, discuss ways to deepen our resilience and find hope in uncertain times.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to:

  • Identify the two types of ambiguous loss.
  • Assess the impact of ambiguous losses on family interaction.
  • Articulate the reasons closure is a myth.
  • Implement research-based guidelines for living well despite ambiguous loss.

 

 


 3:00 p.m.
Break

 


SESSION 4    |     3:30-5:00 p.m.
Lecture
CEH: 1.5 hours

THE PROPHETIC VOICE

Speaker:  Martin Doblmeier

About the Speaker

MARTIN DOBLMEIER

Founder and president of Journey Films in Alexandria, Virginia, a documentary film and television production company with a focus on religion, faith and spirituality

 

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About the Lecture

THE PROPHETIC VOICE

What does it mean to be a “Prophetic Voice?” It means more than a person who believes they can see into the future and predicts an outcome – although a prophetic voice certainly has a forward-looking perspective.

To be a true Prophetic Voice means to first delve deeply and master your own historic traditions – to know what has been said and written in the past, and by whom. It requires studying your scriptures and sacred texts, and the biographies of leading figures in your field. And then, with that as your foundation, to speak with confidence and vision to the contemporary world, bringing insight and perspective to life and death issues that so often divide a nation.

Mid-20th century America was one of the most remarkable periods in our nation’s history. Yet that tension and struggle also produced brilliant, morally grounded characters like Reinhold Niebuhr, Howard Thurman, Dorothy Day and Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel. These were exceptional minds, steeped in sacred traditions with a gift that allowed them to engage a wide audience. Like the Old Testament prophet, Jeremiah, when they spoke, a nation listened.

These four characters offered wisdom and guidance not only to a religious audience but to the wider public. They brought perspective to concerns around Civil Rights, the War in Vietnam, a Cold War and the ever-present threat of nuclear annihilation. These Prophetic Voices had the courage to applaud or challenge authority when called for, as they offered a clear vision for a path to a more peaceful and just future.

Niebuhr, Thurman, Day and Heschel were all religious figures, yet their grasp of patterns of human behavior, politics and history provided them with strategies that remain helpful to this day. They challenge us not only to study their lives and writings but apply their approach to our own moment in history. It has been called both a blessing and a curse to be “born in interesting times” and ours are certainly interesting times. And we can use all the resources and guidance we can find.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to: 

  • Discover how the lives of historic "prophets" offer windows into understanding today's challenges.
  • Appreciate how the stories we tell reveal our inner selves.
  • Explore ways to confront the issues of aging and the struggles of daily life.
  • Confront the important questions of this century and beyond.

 

 

Friday, March 8

SESSION 5    |     8:30-10:15 a.m.
Lecture
CEH: 1.5 hours

MY FATHER’S BRAIN

Speaker:  Sandeep Jauhar, M.D., Ph.D.

About the Speaker

SANDEEP JAUHAR, M.D., Ph.D

Cardiologist and author

 

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About the Lecture

MY FATHER'S BRAIN

Dr. Jauhar takes audiences on a revelatory inquiry into why the human brain degenerates with age and what we can do about it. About one in every ten Americans over the age of sixty-five have Alzheimer's disease or related dementias, and this number is projected to more than double by 2050.

What is it like to live with and amid this increasingly prevalent condition—an affliction that some fear more than death? Dr. Jauhar sets his father's descent into Alzheimer's alongside his own journey toward understanding this disease and how it might best be coped with, if not cured. In an intimate talk rich with humor and heartbreak, he relates how his father and extended family felt, quarreled and found their way through the dissolution of a cherished life.

Along the way, he lucidly exposes what happens in the brain as we age and our memory falters. The result is a work of essential insight into dementia, and into how scientists, caregivers and all of us in an aging society are reckoning with the fallout.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to: 

  • Explain how the brain degenerates with age.
  • Gain an understanding of how to cope with Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Understand the impact of Alzheimer’s disease on society.

 

 


10:15-10:45 a.m.
Break

 


CONCURRENT SESSIONS – 6A, 6B, 6C:  CHOOSE ONE

 SESSION 6A     |    10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Lecture
CEH: 1.5 hours

CAREGIVERS SEEKING PARTNERS-IN-CARE:  WHO ARE WE? WHO ARE THEY? WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE?

Speaker:  Rebecca D. Elon, M.D., MPH, CMD

About the Speaker

REBECCA D. ELON, M.D. MPH, CMD

Internist geriatrician and associate professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

 

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About the Lecture

CAREGIVERS SEEKING PARTNER-IN-CARE:  WHO ARE WE? WHO ARE THEY? WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE?

This lecture will draw upon the popular and professional literature on caregiving, along with Dr. Elon’s personal experience, to discuss the concept of partners-in-care. The lecture will advise caregivers on what they should expect from the existing support system, as well as what they should and should not accept. Dr. Elon will discuss some of the advantages and disadvantages of being a physician while also serving as a family caregiver, including the medical ethics framework that physicians should not treat their own family members. She will give positive examples both from the literature and personal experience, of how caregiving burden is lessened when partners-in-care are found. The overall thesis of the talk is that when caregivers find partners-in-care, a great burden is lifted, a gracious gift is given.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to:

  • Describe the demographics of caregivers, formal and informal, in the U.S.
  • Describe various categories of partners-in-care (clinical and non-clinical) whose aim is to assist caregivers in their role.
  • Discuss the difference between “clinicians” and “partners-in-care.”
  • Imagine the “Zeitenwende” that can occur when both caregivers and clinicians view themselves as partners-in-care.

 

 


 SESSION 6B     |    10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Virtual Lecture
CEH: 1.5 hours

LGBTQIA+ POPULATIONS AND RISK FOR ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE AND RELATED DEMENTIAS

Speaker:  Jason Flatt, Ph.D., MPH

About the Speaker

JASON FLATT, PH.D, MPH

Assistant Professor University of Nevada, Las Vegas, School of Public Health, Department of Social and Behavioral Health 

 

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About the Lecture

LGBTQIA+ POPULATIONS AND RISK FOR ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE AND RELATED DEMENTIAS

Over 3 million or more adults aged 60 + live in the U.S. who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex or another identity (LGBTQIA+). Less is known about dementia risk in LGBTQIA+ older adults. We will discuss risk for Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias (ADRD) and related risk factors among LGBTQIA+ adults from multiple population-based and cohort studies. Our research has found higher rates of memory problems and ADRD risk among LGBTQIA+ older adults. These findings highlight ADRD risk and related problems among SGM older adults. We will also highlight the healthcare, social and related challenges experienced by LGBTQIA+ older adults. Future studies are needed to better understand ADRD risk; and efforts aimed at recruiting, screening and improving ADRD-related outcomes in LGBTQIA+ older adults and their caregivers are greatly needed.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to:

  • List three potential risk factors for dementia among LGBTQIA+ older adults.
  • Describe some of the social and political barriers experienced by LGBTQIA+ older adults living with dementia.
  • Identify two ways to improve healthcare experiences for LGBTQIA+ older adults living with dementia and their caregivers.

 

 


 SESSION 6C     |    10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
Lecture
CEH: 1.5 hours

REVITALIZING RURAL COMMUNITIES – THROUGH SENIOR LIVING REDEVELOPMENT

Speaker:  Stephen J. Shields

About the Speaker

STEPHEN J. SHIELDS

Co-Founder and CEO Action Pact Holdings, LLC

 

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About the Lecture

REVITALIZING RURAL COMMUNITIES - THROUGH SENIOR LIVING REDEVELOPMENT

In his presentation, Shields will give a brief history of the culture change movement, describe the current status of the movement and outline the movement’s future. He will outline the importance of senior living innovation in rural America, the economic impact, the effect on the fabric of the community and the state and national implications. Shields will explain how to let go of outdated historical patterns and create new ones. He will present a framework for rural development including community engagement and alignment, project sizing and scope and project actualization.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to: 

  • Understand the history and present status and future of the culture change movement.
  • Learn data and the implications of rural development in senior living and healthcare.
  • Be sensitized to prevalent community dynamics in small town America.
  • Understand the framework for rural senior living development.

 

 


12:15-1:30 p.m.
Lunch
Registration is required.

 


 SESSION 7     |     1:30-3:00 p.m.
Lecture
CEH: 1.5 hours

ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE, NEUROTECHNOLOGY, AND “OUR TECHNOLOGICAL WAY OF BEING”

Speaker:  Fabrice Jotterand, Ph.D.

About the Speaker

FABRICE JOTTERAND, Ph.D

Professor of Bioethics and Medical Humanities; Director, Graduate Program in Bioethics Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities Medical College of Wisconsin

 

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About the Lecture

ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE, NEUROTECHNOLOGY, AND "OUR TECHNOLOGICAL WAY OF BEING"

Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is an extremely burdensome health condition from both financial and social points of view. The primary risk factor for the development of AD is age and the associated costs are anticipated to soar significantly as approximately 12% of the world’s population is currently over the age of 60. This proportion is expected to nearly double by 2050. By the year 2030, it is estimated that 76 million people will suffer from dementia, the majority of which will be caused by AD. To address these challenges there is an increased impetus to find technological solutions for the care of patients suffering from AD. It is unclear, however, how these technologies will impact patients and more broadly humans in the mid-and long term. This presentation will examine the implications of the use of neurotechnology for dementia care and reflect on the social and anthropological challenges these may pose.

After attending this presentation, the attendee will be able to:

  • Understand the risks and costs associated with Alzheimer’s Disease.
  • Identify technological solutions for the care of Alzheimer’s patients.
  • Describe challenges posed by technology solutions.