Through a partnership with Planetree.org, we interviewed speakers presenting at this year's Planetree International Conference on Person-Centered Care. Through a select set of questions we hope to introduce you to them and give you a glimpse of the ideas being cultivated and the people who are a part of it.
by Wena Lee Luansing @WenaBSN
Who is BJ Miller you ask? He sums up his vision and his career into one word - Palliative.
Dr. Miller was Executive Director of Zen Hospice Project, “a thriving non-profit with a huge heart and an audacious goal: help people pay attention to death,” from 2011-2016 where he helped develop and share a pioneering model of human-centered end of life care. "Professionally, I’m a palliative care physician and educator who believes healthcare is going to be fixed by patients."
He is currently Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California at San Francisco. This year, BJ has spoken at the Leadership Academy and reminded his Twitter followers to “break for nature.”
Explain to us what you mean by "taking a break for nature?" "It helps me feel part of something and find perspective," and he adds, "Go outside. Touch something that isn’t man-made. Tap into the larger cycles of life, seasons, things outside of your control, but which include you." Dr. Miller also speaks to the therapeutic potential of aesthetics, and how to design for life.
On a more personal level he describes himself as someone "[who] loves Utah and exploring it on any type of two-wheeled action. I’m happiest when I’m on the road with my dog...oh and my reason for living is pizza."
If you weren't in this career, what would you be doing instead? After some consideration, he explains he could be a, "professional recluse by day, prosthetic designer by night." Any amateur prosthetic designers out there? By the way, National University's Library now has its own Makerspace in San Diego for students, staff and alumni to 3-D print their models.
If you want to meet or listen to BJ Miller, MD, talk more about palliative and end-of-life care, get your ticket to Boston Baby! See you at the conference.