Ms. Ann Armstrong-Dailey begins her interview by describing some early pivotal moments in her life that led her to a career advocating for palliative care. She first describes the memory of her and her mother fleeing kamikaze pilots and German submarines in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and how that was a formative moment in understanding the processing power and tenacity of children. She then describes the circumstances of her brother's death and the lack of support she received as a transformational moment that empowered her to "audaciously" seek out the global leaders of the world and ask them" why isn't there support for dying children?'
Ms. Armstrong-Dailey then recalls two stories of children that were dying in a hospital and were blocked from receiving hospice care but were desperate to connect and support their parents and families as they died. She describes the momentous effect those deaths had on her and the urgency she felt to find a way to support better family communication and policy protections in pediatric healthcare.
Ms. Armstrong-Dailey tells how she built a supportive network of international collaborators who wanted to do better for dying children. She also describes instances where she rallied with this network to push ideas, legislation, literature, and healthcare models. Ms. Armstrong-Dailey describes some of her work exploring and dismantling some of the resistance she felt by providers and families with education and quantitative research.
She concludes the interview by describing her dream of working herself out of business by integrating palliative care seamlessly into standard medical operating procedures. She also advocates for the continuation of investigations on how healthcare can perform better in communication with patients, families, and each other.
Pediatric Palliative Care Oral History Project
Bernard Becker Medical Library, Washington University in St. Louis
"Ann Armstrong-Dailey Oral History." (2019). OH154-S02-i01, Bernard Becker Medical Library, Washington University in St. Louis.