Skip to main content

On ‘Sound Medicine’: Nursing home quality of life, hospice care, and palliative care for children


INDIANAPOLIS — “Sound Medicine” announces its program for March 9, including segments about palliative care, consoling grieving parents, and preventing infertility in cancer patients.

How can nursing homes improve quality of life for its residents? A new study conducted by Tetyana Shippee, Ph.D., found that the quality of life for nursing home residents depends on personal contact. The study indicated that stimulating residents physically and mentally improved their quality of life substantially. Dr. Shippee, an assistant professor at the University of Michigan, comments on her study and how nursing homes can integrate personal contact into their residents’ daily routines.

Why are terminally ill patients being discharged from hospice care? According to Medicare guidelines, patients enrolled in hospice care receive funding for only six months of end-of-life care. Many for-profit hospices have been accused of enrolling patients who are not dying and then discharging them after six months when Medicare stops paying. Melissa Aldridge, Ph.D., joins “Sound Medicine” to discuss nonprofit hospice care and for-profit hospice care. Dr. Aldridge is an associate professor of geriatrics and palliative medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

How can you console grieving parents? Letty Cottin Pogrebin is the author of a new book, “How to Be a Friend to a Friend Who’s Sick.” After a career that included co-founding Ms. Magazine, Pogrebin drew on her own experience with breast cancer to write this book. She returns to “Sound Medicine” to talk about being a helpful friend to parents whose child has died.

Why are out-patient palliative care programs for children important? A recent study showed that many hospitals have in-patient palliative care programs but lack out-patient programs. Patricia Grady, Ph.D., R.N., director of the National Institute of Nursing Research, discusses the need for more children’s palliative care programs as well as the Conversations Care campaign, which is attempting to raise money for palliative care.

How can cancer centers help young patients avoid infertility? Theresa Woodruff, Ph.D., chief for the Division of Obstetrics and Gynecology-Fertility Preservation at Northwestern University, joins “Sound Medicine” to talk about a recent study published in the Journal of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network that says many cancer centers are not adequately working to prevent infertility in young cancer patients. Dr. Woodruff discusses cancer treatments that can render infertility as well as what cancer centers can do to encourage fertility preservation.

“Sound Medicine” covers controversial ethics topics, breakthrough research studies and the day-to-day application of recent advancements in medicine. It’s also available via podcast and Stitcher Radio for mobile phones and iPads and posts updates on Facebook and Twitter.

Co-produced by the IU School of Medicine and WFYI Public Radio (90.1 FM) and underwritten in part by Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, “Sound Medicine” airs on the following Indiana public radio stations: WBSB (Anderson, 89.5 FM), WFIU (Bloomington, 103.7 FM; Columbus, 100.7 FM; Kokomo, 106.1 FM; Terre Haute, 95.1 FM), WNDY (Crawfordsville, 91.3 FM), WVPE (Elkhart/South Bend, 88.1 FM), WNIN (Evansville, 88.3 FM), WBOI (Fort Wayne, 89.1 FM), WFCI (Franklin, 89.5 FM), WBSH (Hagerstown/New Castle, 91.1 FM), WFYI (Indianapolis), WBSW (Marion, 90.9 FM), WBST (Muncie, 92.1 FM), WBSJ (Portland, 91.7 FM), WLPR (Lake County, 89.1 FM) and WBAA (West Lafayette, 101.3 FM).

“Sound Medicine” is also broadcast on these public radio stations across the country: KSKA (Anchorage, Alaska), KTNA (Talkeetna, Alaska), KUHB (Pribilof Islands, Alaska), KUAF (Fayetteville and Fort Smith, Ark.), KIDE (Hoopa Valley, Calif.), KRCC (Colorado Springs, Colo.), KEDM (Monroe, La.), WCMU (Mount Pleasant, Mich.), WCNY and WRVO-1 (Syracuse, N.Y.), KMHA (Four Bears, N.D.), WYSU (Youngstown, Ohio), KPOV (Bend, Ore.) and KEOS (College Station, Texas).

Please check local listings for broadcast dates and times.