Author(s): Ken Hillman
A professor of intensive care asks why so many elderly people linger in pain and confusion in ICU when all they want is to die at home in peace and with their loved ones. A crucial and timely rallying cry against unnecessary suffering and for humanity and gentle acceptance at the end of our lives.
Ken Hillman is a practising intensive care specialist who is a Professor of Intensive Care at the University of New South Wales, the Foundation Director of The Simpson Centre for Health Services Research, and a member of the Ingham Institute of Applied Medical Research. He trained at St Vincent's Hospital in Sydney and worked in London for six years before returning to Australia as Director of Intensive Care at Liverpool Hospital in Sydney. Professor Hillman is internationally recognised as a pioneer in the introduction of the Medical Emergency Team, which recognises and responds to seriously ill hospital patients early in their deterioration and has been adopted in the majority of hospitals in the United Kingdom, the United States of America and several European countries. He is also a passionate advocate of improving the management of the dying patient in acute hospitals.