Impact of Care - Carla Fracchia
She was so moved by an experience that she and her dying mother had at CPMC that Dr. Carla Fracchia is changing her career path from OB/GYN to palliative care. Seen here hiking Wood Line in The Presidio, she starts her Fellowship in Hospice and Palliative Medicine in summer 2016.
End-of-Life Care Offers Life-Changing Moment
This is a letter written by Carla Fracchia, M.D., to Catherine Seeley, M.D., Medical Director of CPMC’s Palliative Care Program.
Dear Dr. Seeley,
Many months ago, you did a palliative care consultation for my mom, Ann. She had extreme pain and other complications after being given the diagnosis of metastatic cancer of unknown origin. I’m not sure if you remember her or me, but I think I told you that I myself am a doctor.
She lived another nine weeks after that at CPMC’s Coming Home Hospice. I was tremendously moved by the end-of-life care she received and our experiences with your team have inspired me to make a career change and apply for a palliative care fellowship.
I finished residency quite a long time ago, in 1997, and have worked as an OB/GYN ever since. That means I could retire in about eight years. But I’ve been thinking about making the switch to palliative care literally since about a half-hour after you walked in to see my mom. I was deeply touched by your team’s kindness and patience. That is the kind of doctor I am too, and I want to be in a specialty that truly emphasizes this type of patient-centered care.
My 21-year-old stepdaughter Lily describes my move going from one end of life’s spectrum to the other with my work as poetic. I agree. Thank you again for what you did for mom, and me.