Poetics of Dying is an educational toolkit
created by Amanda Astorga-Pinto, Naoki Hashimoto, and
Jenny Liu in
collaboration with New York Presbyterian Hospital and Parsons School of Design
to teach medical practitioners how to have an honest and open conversation
about end of life.
As we live in an age where medical advancements are allowing people to live longer and attitudes are shifting on survival and longevity, issues surrounding dying and end of life care have remained largely unaddressed by non-palliative care doctors. Poetics
of Dying addresses the lack of attention and communication around what it means to have “a good end of life” due to over-prioritization of acute interventions and rescue.
Our designed research tools emerged into an educational concept tool that we have been continuing to prototype with medical practitioners in training. We discovered that to truly embody these issues around dying and care, physicians-in-training must allow
these insights to come from a form of self-realization of their own biases in language and communication.
To achieve this goal, the tool does not explicitly lay out these key concerns, but creates the conditions that will allow physicians-in-training to arrive at these realizations themselves.
Understanding that honest doctor-patient conversations are an overlooked area of medical care that carries great personal and financial burden, we began our process by examining how physician attitudes around end of life are formed, starting with the
early stages of their medical training.
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