Oct. 23, 2002

 

THE DARK SIDE OF CAREGIVING:

WHY DO WE LET OUR PATIENTS SUFFER?

 

Pain specialist Matthew Loscalzo has been studying a phenomenon among doctors, nurses and social workers who, when confronted with patients in pain, become “paralyzed” and fail to take sufficient action to offer relief.  Loscalzo compares this type of “undertreatment” to the inaction of bystanders who witness an assault or accident and don’t call authorities or offer help.

 

“Cancer pain is one of the best examples of this phenomena. We know how to treat cancer pain 99 percent of the time, but when you survey patients, 35 to 40 percent will report pain. So how do you begin to explain that?” says James Zabora, dean of CUA’s National Catholic School of Social Service, who worked with Loscalzo at the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins Hospital. “We have the technology and knowledge on how to treat these patients’ pain, and millions of dollars have been spent on educating caregivers about this issue. Yet there seems to be this fundamental problem between knowledge and treatment of patients.”

 

Loscalzo and Zabora will be discussing research on “undertreatment,” at a lecture scheduled from 4 to 6 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 23, in the Gowan Auditorium at Catholic University.

 

WHAT:           Lecture: “The Dark Side of Caregiving: Why Do We Let Our Patients

      Suffer?”

 

WHEN:           Wednesday, Oct. 23, from 4 to 6 p.m.

 

WHERE:        Gowan Hall Auditorium, Catholic University

620 Michigan Ave., N.E., Washington, D.C.

 

DETAILS:      Matthew Loscalzo, M.S.W., is associate dean of the Eastern Virginia Medical College. He also serves as director of pain and palliative care for Sentara Health System in Norfolk, Va.

                                                                          

                        James Zabora, dean of CUA’s National Catholic School of Social Work, recently came to the university from his post as associate director of the cancer center at Johns Hopkins University Hospital.

                       

                        The lecture is free and is open to the public and the press.

 

SPONSOR:    CUA’s National Catholic School of Social Service and School of Nursing.

 

MEDIA:         To arrange coverage of the event, contact Chris Harrison or Victor Nakas at

202-319-5600.

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