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WRITER: MEGHAN NEARY
CONTACT: BECKY SOGLIN
5137 Westlawn
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-6660; fax (319) 384-4638
e-mail: becky-soglin@uiowa.edu

Release: April 2, 2001

Teleconference to help caregivers who deal with grief, loss

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Helping others cope with loss and experiencing grief directly can be difficult for family caregivers. Local health professionals and caregivers who wish to learn more about dealing with grief may participate in the Hospice Foundation of America's Eighth Annual Living With Grief Teleconference to be held from 12:30 to 3 p.m., Wednesday, April 18.

"Caregiving and Loss: Family Needs, Professional Responses," a live-via-satellite teleconference, will be broadcast to three Iowa City locations. ABC News journalist Cokie Roberts will moderate a panel discussion on how medical professionals can better serve and educate family caregivers. Panelists also will talk about strategies for caregivers to handle the stress of working closely with grief. The local sponsors are the University of Iowa Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center, Hospice of Iowa City, Mercy Hospital Iowa City, and the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Iowa City.

To reserve a place at the teleconference, call Mercy On Call by Friday, April 13 at (800) 358-2767 or (319) 358-2767. This event is free, and pre-registration is encouraged. Registration at the door will be allowed as space permits at each site. Medical professionals may earn continuing education units or continuing medical education credits. All participants will receive a complimentary copy of the teleconference companion book on living with grief.

The three sites for the teleconference are the Braley Auditorium in the Pomerantz Pavilion at the UI Hospitals and Clinics; the McAuley Room in the Mercy Medical Plaza; and conference room 3W19B at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

The panelists who will join Cokie Roberts for the teleconference are Kenneth J. Doka, Lutheran minister and professor of gerontology at the College of New Rochelle and senior consultant to Hospice Foundation of America; Bernice Catherine Harper, medical care advisor of the Health Care Financing Administration; Carol Levine, director of the Families and Health Care Project of the United Hospital Fund in New York and the Orphan Project: Families and Children in the HIV Epidemic; Susan Reinhard, executive director of the Center for Medicare Education, Institute for the Future of Aging Services in Washington, D.C.; and Myrl Weinberg, president of the National Health Council.

The teleconference also will feature a special message from former First Lady Rosalynn Carter.

The Hospice Foundation of America will present this teleconference in cooperation with the Compassionate Friends and the Association for Death Education and Counseling.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide.