‘Inside UVA’: A Palliative Care Nurse on the Moments After a Patient Dies

May 18, 2023 By Jane Kelly, jak4g@virginia.edu Jane Kelly, jak4g@virginia.edu

Audio: ‘Inside UVA’: A Palliative Care Nurse on the Moments After a Patient Dies(25:56)

Palliative care nurse Jonathan Bartels describes how he created “The Pause” in this week’s episode of “Inside UVA.”


It’s enough to give you pause.

If you’ve watched “Emergency NYC,” an episodic Netflix documentary about frontline health care workers that has a 100% critics’ satisfaction rating on Rotten Tomatoes, then you’ve had a front-row seat to the dramatic, draining work happening every day in the city’s hospitals.

It’s a dramatic rendering of the reality of life and sometimes, death.

Years earlier, that reality led an emergency room nurse at UVA Health to pioneer a calming and sensitive approach used in hospitals in the immediate aftermath of a patient’s death.

Jonathan Bartels, now a palliative care nurse liaison, is the 2010 pioneer of a practice called “The Pause,” and this week’s guest on “Inside UVA,” University of Virginia President Jim Ryan’s popular podcast.

“The Pause” is used in hospital settings immediately after a patient has died. Health care workers stop for a moment to honor the patient, the family and the health care team.

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Jane Kelly

University News Senior Associate Office of University Communications