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Published on February 22, 2016

Ethics Conference to Focus on Conversations about End of Life Care

WATERBURY, Conn. (February 22, 2016) ─ Saint Mary’s Hospital is hosting “Last Things First: Empowering Conversations about End of Life Care,” a two-day ethics conference for the community, physicians and hospital staff on Tuesday, March 1 and Wednesday, March 2. The conference will feature a series of crucial conversations regarding end of life care with award-winning journalist and author Stephen Kiernan, whose nonfiction works include “Last Rights: Rescuing the End of Life from the Medical System.”Author Stephen Kiernan

The community is invited to attend Kiernan’s presentation, “Pack a Parachute: How to Guarantee a Bodacious Last Chapter in Life,” which will be held March 1 at 6 pm in the auditorium of Saint Mary’s Medical-Dental Conference Center. This event is free and open to the public. Free parking will be available in the conference center parking garage. The entrance is located off South Elm Street, directly across from Sacred Heart High School.

In his presentation, Kiernan will discuss why he believes the last chapter of life can be fulfilling, peaceful and beautiful. He uses stories, lots of humor, and solid research to provide audiences with the tools, skills and attitudes to turn life’s most vulnerable times into its most enriching ones.

Kiernan has worked for several decades as a journalist, winning more than 40 awards — including the George Polk Award and the Scripps Howard Award for Distinguished Service to the First Amendment. Author of the novels “The Hummingbird” and “The Curiosity,” he has also written two non-fiction books, “Last Rights” and “Authentic Patriotism.”

Kiernan was born in Newtonville, NY, the sixth of seven children. A graduate of Middlebury College, he received a Master of Arts degree from Johns Hopkins University and a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop. He has chaired the board of the Young Writers Project, served on the Vermont Legislative Committee on Pain and Palliative Care, and joined the advisory board of the New Hampshire Palliative Care Initiative. A resident of Vermont, he travels the country speaking and consulting on how to expand the use of hospice, palliative care and advance directives.

For more information about the community presentation, contact Kathryn Walker, Community Outreach and Project Coordinator, at 203-709-3312 or email Click here for online registration and directions.

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