As chief of the Palliative Care Program at Massachusetts General Hospital and the Mass General Cancer Center, Vicki Jackson, MD, MPH, and her team of specialists help patients and their families maintain a high quality of life when facing life-threatening illness.
Leading this division since 2010, Dr. Jackson has guided its growth into a clinical and research resource that enhances patient care throughout the Cancer Center.
Unlike hospice services, which focus on end-of-life care, palliative care services help patients and families cope with illness at any phase. This type of care is focused on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain and stress of a serious illness — whatever the diagnosis or prognosis. It is an extra layer of support to the patient’s other clinicians. The goal is to help patients with serious illness live as well as possible. Dr. Jackson and her team provide a variety of services, including pain and symptom management, to help patients remain comfortable and active during illness.
An exemplary practitioner as well as an inspiring administrator, Dr. Jackson immediately puts patients at ease with her kindness and warmth.
In the vanguard of her young field, Dr. Jackson trains clinicians in this continually evolving practice, offers supportive services to clinicians working with seriously ill patients and promotes the benefits of palliative care. Dr. Jackson also partners in the research of her colleague Jennifer Temel, MD, who is studying the potential of palliative care to both improve and extend a cancer patient’s life.