B-TAC

The Blog to Transform Advanced Care

Advancing Care through Innovation, Observation and Collaboration.

Remembering Richard Payne, MD

The advanced care community has suffered a tremendous loss with the passing of Dr. Richard Payne on January 3. A friend and partner to C-TAC, Dr. Payne was a steadfast advocate for those receiving care at the end of life. He was a neurologist, as well as an internationally known and respected authority on pain relief and palliative care.

I had the privilege of serving with Dr. Payne on the Board of Directors of the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, and it was an honor to work alongside him as we advocated for those whose lives have been touched by cancer.

The compassion he demonstrated for those with serious illnesses and the importance he placed on the doctor-patient relationship will continue to inspire C-TAC as we strive to support people with advanced illness and their families.

Dr. Payne understood the importance of promoting spiritual wellbeing in those receiving care, and served as a key partner in C-TAC’s faith community outreach through our Interfaith and Diversity Workgroup. He was also a faculty member for the Duke Divinity School’s Theology, Medicine, and Culture initiative. During his time at Duke, he helped to form the Duke Institute on Care at the End of Life. Before arriving at Duke in 2004, he led Memorial Sloan-Kettering’s Pain and Palliative Care Service. Dr. Payne also served as president of the American Pain Society from 2003-2004. In addition to these achievements, he is credited with more than 275 publications in his field.

These accolades and accomplishments remind us of the impact that we can have in the lives of those who face advanced illness and their families. The loss of Dr. Payne is immense, but so too is his contribution to his field. We are grateful to have learned from him and hope to follow his example.

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