The first Project TRIO (Transforming Risk into Opportunity) working summit brought together a wide range of health and human service professionals committed to furthering the cause of redesigning palliative care for underserved populations. “It was great to see how much people care and want to collaborate,” says organizer Dr. Suzanne Mitchell, Associate Professor of Family Medicine at Boston University School of Medicine and the Director of Ambulatory Palliative Care at Boston Medical Center. “People walked away with new tools and had a great experience.” The Coalition was a sponsor of the day-long event, which was held last November at the Boston University Questrom School of Business.
The 73 people in attendance heard from keynote speaker Linda Briggs, co-creator of Respecting Choices about how her organization was able to adapt their protocol for advance care planning to meet the needs of diverse communities. Design thinking workshops were also held with attendees to explore new ways to identify and engage vulnerable populations who face daunting challenges when facing serious illness.
Innovation awards were given out in recognition of new ideas in the field. Morning Light’s Executive Director and CEO Tom Fodor was honored with first prize for his organization’s operation of the Abbie Hunt Bryce Home, a free hospice residence in Indianapolis, Indiana. The team from Care Dimensions’ Hospice Care for Intellectually and Developmentally Disabled Adults received the second place prize. Welcome Home of Chattanooga’s Executive Director Sherry Campbell accepted the third place prize for her organization, which is a home for people with a terminal illness who have nowhere to go for end of life care.
Dr. Mitchell says members of the group are committed to continuing their conversations about palliative care for underserved populations. Plans are underway to have another summit next year.