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Palliative Care is Not a Dirty Word

Fran Heller, LMSW, New York Presbyterian - Columbia University Medical Center

Fran Heller received her Masters of Social Work from Yeshiva University. She is the Senior Social Worker on the Palliative Care Consult Service at NY Presbyterian Hospital, Columbia University Medical Center. This is an interdisciplinary team consisting of a social worker, nurse practitioner and MD. The team addresses many quality of life issues confronting patients with a life limiting diagnosis and seeks to reduce suffering on physical, emotional and spiritual levels.

This is done mostly by addressing symptoms and working together with the patients’ families from a holistic perspective. She is also involved in the Narrative Medicine program at Columbia and has been co-facilitator for the past 3 years of the Team Continuum Narrative Writing Program for Patients, Caregivers, and Clinicians.

Nicole Goetz, DNP, FNP- C, New York Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center

Nicole Goetz, Assistant Clinical Professor of Nursing at the Columbia University School of Nursing, is a nurse practitioner in the Division of Upper GI and Endocrine Surgery at New York Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center. She manages patients’ surgical experiences, and conducts pre-op, post-op, episodic, emergent, and routine follow-up office visits. Dr. Goetz earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in biology and nursing at Pace University in New York City. She completed a Doctorate of Nursing Practice at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. Her doctoral work involved creating an online support group for patients with metastatic or recurrent pancreatic adenocarcinoma.


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