Frank Ostaseski

At its core, good medicine is built on the practice of wise and compassionate relationship. Patients want more than expertise – they need a human face on the medical care they receive. Continuity, trust and communication matter.

Yet healthcare professionals face increasing constraints, urgency to work harder and faster and a reduction in critical resources. These stressors can contribute to self-neglect, distancing from patients, empathetic overload and a disconnection from their motivating intention to serve.

Frank will discuss some of the very real personal and systemic challenges that clinicians and caregivers face daily. He will explore how we can build and create meaningful connections, maintain balance in chaos, cultivate resilience and the importance of our taking a compassionate stance for healthy work environments and acting on our own behalf.

Learning Outcomes

      • Describe how an awareness of death can be a valuable companion on the road to living well
      • Identify best practices for navigating a life transition, coping with loss or serious illness and how they guide us toward appreciating life’s preciousness
      • Outline five guidelines for being with dying and living fully

Frank Ostaseski

Frank Ostaseski is a pioneer in end-of-life care. In 1987, he co-founded the Zen Hospice Project, the first Buddhist hospice in America. He guided that groundbreaking work for almost 20 years, establishing a  longstanding model for mindful and  compassionate care. In 2005, he founded the Metta Institute, training countless healthcare clinicians and caregivers and building a national network of educators, advocates and guides for those facing life-threatening illness.

Frank has dedicated his life to service. It has been fusion of spiritual insight and practical social action. It manifests in caring for the homeless, serving on the early front lines of the AIDS epidemic, lobbying Congress, teaching meditation and most daunting raising four teenagers at the same time.

He has distilled hard-won lessons from his own life journey and synthesized 30 years of being with dying into his personal brand of wisdom. He inspires and engages diverse audiences from Harvard Medical School students to Mayo Clinic clinicians and Wisdom 2.0 seekers. His work has been highlighted on the Oprah Winfrey Show, featured by Bill Moyers on his PBS television series, On Our Own Terms and honored by H.H. the Dalai Lama.

He is the author of The Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Can Teach Us About Living Fully.