Cicely Saunders - Nurses, Timeline and Family

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Cicely Saunders's Personal Details

Cicely Saunders was a prominent nurse, social worker and physician who emphasized the importance of palliative care in modern medicine

InformationDetail
BirthdayJune 22, 1918
Died onJuly 14, 2005
NationalityBritish
FamousNurses, Oxford University, Physicians, Miscellaneous, Nurses
Universities
  • Oxford University
Notable Alumnis
  • Oxford University
Cause of deathCancer
Birth PlaceBarnet, Hertfordshire, England
GenderFemale
Sun SignCancer
Born inBarnet, Hertfordshire, England
Famous asEnglish nurse
Died at Age87

// Famous Nurses

Cicely Saunders's photo

Who is Cicely Saunders?

Cicely Saunders was a renowned nurse, physician and social worker. She was credited for introducing the idea of “total pain” through which she gave equal importance to physical, emotional, social and spiritual distress. During her tenure as a research fellow at St. Mary’s Paddington, she campaigned for the practice of the administration of drugs on a regular basis to those patients who were suffering from constant pain. She put stress on the fact that patients’ constant need of certain medicines like morphine leads them towards addiction to such medicines. According to her, only regular administration of such medicines can solve this problem by enabling them to receive lower doses of these medicines. This theory of Cicely is considered as an important part of hospice care. She will be remembered as the founder of St. Christopher’s hospice that takes care of terminally ill patients. In an era, when euthanasia was considered as the only solution for patients suffering from cancer and other painful conditions, she proved that pain can be controlled by compassionate care and love through the establishment of St. Christopher’s hospice. This organization is the first in the history of medicine to combine teaching and clinical research. She also authored books like “Care Of The Dying” and co-edited “The Management Of Terminal Disease”.

// Famous Physicians

Childhood & Early Life

Cicely Saunders was the eldest child of Gordon Saunders, who worked in real estate, and his wife Chrissie. She belonged to a wealthy family of London. She attended day school from where she received her early education.

At the age of ten, she took admission at Southlands, a boarding school near Brighton. From 1932 to 1937, she attended Roedean, a fashionable boarding school near Brighton.

She planned to study at Oxford University after completing her education from Roedean. Unfortunately, she could not clear the entrance test. Later, she attended St. Anne’s College, Oxford.

After taking admission at St Anne’s in 1938, she decided to study politics, philosophy and economics. Later, she decided to join the Nightingale Training School to train as a Red Cross Nurse. Therefore, she left St. Anne’s in 1940.

She served her probationary rotations at several mental hospitals in London. After that, she served for the medical, surgical, children’s and gynaecological wards at Park Prewett hospital.

In 1944, she returned to St. Anne’s College owing to a back injury and took a BA in 1945. Next, she received training at the Royal Cancer Hospital and qualified as a medical social worker.

Career

She started her career as a medical social worker in September 1947, by serving as an assistant almoner at St. Thomas’s Hospital’s Northcote Trust, a specialized health centre for cancer patients.

In the late 1940s, she worked part-time at St. Luke’s Home for the Dying Poor in Bayswater.

In 1951, she joined St Thomas's Hospital Medical School to become a physician. She graduated with MBBS degree in 1957. After that, she joined the pharmacology department at St. Mary’s Paddington as a research fellow.

At St. Mary’s Paddington, she also used to take care of patients. It was during this time that she took the initiative to promote the practice of the regular administration of drugs to relieve patients’ pain.

In 1958, she worked at the Roman Catholic St. Joseph’s hospice in Hackney, East London. There she served for seven years and pursued research work on pain control.

In 1959, she remained busy in writing papers on her concepts for the modern approach towards hospice. Through one of her papers titled “The Need”, she highlighted the issue of loneliness and isolation of patients. She stated about the significance of love and care as essential part of treatment to cure such patients.

Her second paper “The Scheme” states her plan for a 100-bed home for cancer patients and for those who were suffering from other terminal illnesses. She also mentioned about a chapel, staff theologians and prayer time as part of effective medical treatment.

While working at St. Joseph’s Hospital, she started raising funds for the construction of St. Christopher’s Hospice, her dream project of a 100-bed home for cancer patients.

St. Christopher’s started functioning from 1967. She served as its medical director from this year. In 1985, she acted as its chairman and she remained in this position till 2000. In 2000, she became the President of this organization.

Awards & Achievements

Cicely and her St. Christopher’s received the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize for modern approach towards hospice movement. This award acknowledges the importance of science and humanity to treat patients.

Personal Life & Legacy

While serving at St. Thomas’s Hospital’s Northcote Trust, she met David Tasma, a cancer patient from Poland. She fell in love with Tasma whom she nursed till his death.

Tasma left 500 pounds which acted as an inspiration behind the construction of her dream project St. Christopher’s Hospice. Later, she developed romantic relationship with Antoni Michniewicz, her patient. Antoni passed away in 1960.

In 1980, she married Professor Marian Bohusz-Szyszko, a Polish painter. In 1995, Marian passed away in St. Christopher’s hospice.

Cicely died of cancer at the age of 87 at St. Christopher's Hospice.

Trivia

In one of her interviews, this prominent social worker admitted that being an introvert, she found it extremely difficult to make friends while studying at Roedean boarding school. Moreover, her parents’ unhappy marriage complicated her situation.

// Famous Nurses

Cicely Saunders biography timelines

  • // 22nd Jun 1918
    Cicely Saunders was the eldest child of Gordon Saunders, who worked in real estate, and his wife Chrissie. She belonged to a wealthy family of London. She attended day school from where she received her early education.
  • // 1932 To 1937
    At the age of ten, she took admission at Southlands, a boarding school near Brighton. From 1932 to 1937, she attended Roedean, a fashionable boarding school near Brighton.
  • // 1938 To 1940
    After taking admission at St Anne’s in 1938, she decided to study politics, philosophy and economics. Later, she decided to join the Nightingale Training School to train as a Red Cross Nurse. Therefore, she left St. Anne’s in 1940.
  • // 1944 To 1945
    In 1944, she returned to St. Anne’s College owing to a back injury and took a BA in 1945. Next, she received training at the Royal Cancer Hospital and qualified as a medical social worker.
  • // 1947
    She started her career as a medical social worker in September 1947, by serving as an assistant almoner at St. Thomas’s Hospital’s Northcote Trust, a specialized health centre for cancer patients.
  • // 1951 To 1957
    In 1951, she joined St Thomas's Hospital Medical School to become a physician. She graduated with MBBS degree in 1957. After that, she joined the pharmacology department at St. Mary’s Paddington as a research fellow.
  • // 1958
    In 1958, she worked at the Roman Catholic St. Joseph’s hospice in Hackney, East London. There she served for seven years and pursued research work on pain control.
  • // 1959
    In 1959, she remained busy in writing papers on her concepts for the modern approach towards hospice. Through one of her papers titled “The Need”, she highlighted the issue of loneliness and isolation of patients. She stated about the significance of love and care as essential part of treatment to cure such patients.
  • // 1967 To 2000
    St. Christopher’s started functioning from 1967. She served as its medical director from this year. In 1985, she acted as its chairman and she remained in this position till 2000. In 2000, she became the President of this organization.
  • // 1980
    In 1980, she married Professor Marian Bohusz-Szyszko, a Polish painter. In 1995, Marian passed away in St. Christopher’s hospice.
  • // 14th Jul 2005
    Cicely died of cancer at the age of 87 at St. Christopher's Hospice.

// Famous Miscellaneous

Cicely Saunders's FAQ

  • What is Cicely Saunders birthday?

    Cicely Saunders was born at 1918-06-22

  • When was Cicely Saunders died?

    Cicely Saunders was died at 2005-07-14

  • Which age was Cicely Saunders died?

    Cicely Saunders was died at age 87

  • Where is Cicely Saunders's birth place?

    Cicely Saunders was born in Barnet, Hertfordshire, England

  • What is Cicely Saunders nationalities?

    Cicely Saunders's nationalities is British

  • What was Cicely Saunders universities?

    Cicely Saunders studied at Oxford University

  • What was Cicely Saunders notable alumnis?

    Cicely Saunders's notable alumnis is Oxford University

  • What is Cicely Saunders's cause of dead?

    Cicely Saunders dead because of Cancer

  • What is Cicely Saunders's sun sign?

    Cicely Saunders is Cancer

  • How famous is Cicely Saunders?

    Cicely Saunders is famouse as English nurse