An interactive CD-ROM and Web Site inviting patients and families to learn about the practical, emotional, spiritual and medical issues faced by those dealing with advanced illness.

Empowerment and support
Completing a Life offers a rich resource for people who are living with advanced illness. With over a hundred separate topic pages linked by easy-to-use navigation tools, it allows anyone to chart a personal pathway through the content. Users can find the information they need most whenever they need it.

The product works with a computer's web browser, and the entire contents can be accessed within that familiar environment. The material contained in Completing a Life covers a wide range of concerns, addressing such areas as getting good pain relief, talking with health professionals, family communication, writing advance directives, and finding answers to spiritual questions.

Content in depth
Completing a Life contains three main areas:

  • Taking Charge—staying active in decisions about your health care, your family, and everyday living
  • Finding Comfort—easing pain and suffering, and living with dignity at this time of life
  • Reaching Closure—coming to terms with the past, present and future, and exploring the possibilities for spiritual growth

In addition, some pages link to special topics designed primarily for family members. Many pages are also linked to resources on the Internet.

Comfort and welcome
Completing a Life uses both words and images to create a warm and comforting environment. It invites users to find rest and renewal in a peaceful garden setting as it empowers them to take charge and make decisions.

Users can also choose to have a page read to them by a narrator, a feature that can be turned on and off. The narration, along with theme music, provides a friendly, confident and reassuring tone.

Personal stories
A highlight of Completing a Life is a Personal Stories section that features the real-life experiences of people who have walked the path of advanced illness. Told in the words of those who lived them, these video narratives illuminate many of the topics addressed in the content sections. They also create a kind of virtual support group in which the user interacts with the stories of nine diverse individuals, each of whom has a unique perspective to share.

As in the main content areas, users have full control of how they view the Personal Stories, moving through labeled video clips according to their own interest. They can also move easily between stories and related topics in the main content areas. Stories and content are extensively cross-linked to enhance the user's interactive, multimedia experience.

Obtaining the CD-ROM
The CD-ROM is available now through the Instructional Media Center at Michigan State University. You can order directly through the web by clicking here or you can order by phone at 517-353-9229.

The Web Site
The Completing A Life Web site is available now. It requires a high-speed connection to the Internet. Access it now.

Created at Michigan State University by the Communication Technology Laboratory and the Palliative Care Education & Research Program.

Supported by Michigan State University Cancer Center and Office of Libraries, Computing and Technology, the Henry Ford Health System, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Michigan Department of Community Health

Copyright 2001 Michigan State University. All Rights Reserved | Contact Us