Hi, welcome to Palliative Care Always. I'm Kavitha and I'm a faculty member in Palliative medicine and Oncology, at Stanford University. Palliative care is what I call the new old specialty. It is the art of medicine. What makes us all human. It is what drives us to learn about our patients' stories, and makes us want to seek knowledge in order to improve our patients' experience. At its heart, it is what we as clinicians do every day, which is to connect and palliate or to ease suffering. The goal is improvement of quality of life. This involves understanding not only the physical needs of our patients, but also their psychological, social, and spiritual needs. So why, you might ask, is there a need for the specialty? Especially if it is truly the art of medicine. My argument is that sometimes you don't, we all practice what I call Primary Palliative Care. This occurs in our clinics, when we discuss difficult news, or treat pain or listen to a family member, who is in distress. Primary Palliative Care is the main goal of this course, giving all of you the key skills to walk away with techniques and strategies to improve your ability to help patients live well throughout the course of their illness, but there are times, even with the best attempts that we are unable to palliate. We have a patient whose pain is out of control or family member who doesn't understand why their loved one cannot be cured. We might see anxiety and distress in our patients that we do not have time to address, and sometimes we don't have the skills, or the time. When this occurs, we can access a specialist palliative care team. These are the members that you will be introduced to in this course. They will spend some time with you, talking about what they do, and how they can help you. They will also spend some time with Sarah. As we move forward, let's keep in mind a few important details about palliative care. Palliative care is about improving quality of life that focuses on the four quadrants: The physical, psychological, social, and emotional. Palliative care is a team approach. It recognizes that in this day and age, medicine is not practiced by an individual, but rather a group of people. Palliative care is meant to treat the patient, their family, and often, if done right, it also improves a clinician's well-being. Palliative care can be categorized as primary, the care that is practiced by all of us in oncology. Whether as a social worker, an oncologist, a surgeon, or a specialist, or that which is practiced by a group of individuals who have extra training in this field. At its most basic, palliative care revolves around communication and symptom management, physical, existential, and psychological. As we meet our team members and as they interact with Sarah, they will come back to these key principles. They will introduce you, to how they cover the four quadrants, how they practice as a team, and their key strategies for communication and symptom management. They will walk with Sarah, as she moves through her cancer journey. So without further ado, it is my pleasure to introduce you to some of my favorite people, and let me introduce you to Sarah Foster.