WV Care Conference: Providing
Ethical Care

With support from the Maier Foundation

Marcia Levetown, Keynote Speaker


Marcia Levetown, MD, MMM, HMDC, FAAHPM, was among the first physicians in the U.S. to be certified in hospice and palliative medicine in 2008. She has been a pioneer in the field since 1994 and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.

Dr. Levetown was trained as a pediatric critical care physician, but left that arena in 1994 to provide hospice and palliative care to children and, in 1996, to adults as well. She is the co-editor of 2 books on pediatric palliative care, author of several chapters in nursing and medical textbooks, curricula, peer-reviewed papers, national policies and served as an item writer for the Pediatric Board Certification examination in the area of ethics, She also served as the Inaugural Medical Director of the Palliative Medicine department at Methodist Hospital in the Houston, Texas medical center, an all adult hospital with 127 ICU beds and she served as Regional

Medical Director for VITAS Hospice, overseeing clinical care quality at 15 locations in 5 states. Currently, she is an independent consultant, based in Houston, TX, a professional photographer and an insatiable traveler.

Keynote Presentation Topic:

Ethical Considerations for Hospice and Palliative Care

Keynote Presentation Description:

Hospice and palliative care are life-affirming service options that prevent and reduce suffering for patients and families facing serious and terminal conditions. Yet, these services are often used too late, if at all. This interactive session will address persistent public and professional misperceptions of hospice and palliative care, suggest new ways to both think and speak of these service models, and will dive further into specific situations in life-threatening and terminal illness that challenge our ethical and linguistic skills. Suggestions for how to convey hope, empathy and support while discussing difficult ideas, whether in person or by telehealth, to rural and urban patients and family members will be offered.

Keynote Objectives:

  1. Be able to list at least three supportive ways to describe hospice and palliative care.
  2. Be able to suggest forgoing resuscitation and/or ICU interventions in a manner that does not convey abandonment or “giving up”, while also not being threatening.
  3. Identify supportive vs non-supportive word choices in hospice and palliative care settings, including forgoing antibiotics and medically supplied nutrition and hydration, if applicable.
  4. Be able to describe an effective way to assure information has been received and digested by the other party in clinical conversations.
  5. List at least 3 ways to establish rapport while providing telehealth care.

Continuing Education Information

The West Virginia Rural Health Association is a continuing education provider for nurses, social workers and physicians, and this program is approved for 4.8 contact hours for nurses (4 contact hours for social workers).

We are proud to be able to offer this meeting free to attendees thanks the generous support from the Maier Foundation, but we do request that you register all attendees.

WV Care Conference Agenda

Time Activity
10:30 a.m. Keynote Presentation
12:00 p.m. Lunch Provided / HCWV Quarterly Business Meeting
1:00 p.m. Breakout Sessions with Rural Health and Hospice/Palliative Care

Conference Registration

Registration is now closed.