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Bereavement outcomes and experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic: A longitudinal mixed-methods study with policy impact - 27 September 2023

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Bereavement outcomes and experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic: A longitudinal mixed-methods study with policy impact

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a devastating mass-bereavement event, with uniquely difficult sets of circumstances experienced by people bereaved at this time. Discussing results from a longitudinal survey and semi-structured interviews, this presentation considers the longer term outcomes and experiences of people bereaved in the UK during the first two waves of the pandemic, with a focus on factors associated with symptoms of prolonged grief disorder. We also discuss the impacts of our research on bereavement policy and practice during and beyond the pandemic.

About the speakers

Dr Lucy Selman is Associate Professor in Palliative and End of Life Care at the University of Bristol, where she co-leads the research group. Specific current research interests include treatment decision-making and communication; family care-giving and bereavement; widening access to services; and public health approaches to bereavement support. She has published over 100 peer-reviewed papers and regularly contributes to discussions about end-of-life care and bereavement in the media. In 2020 she founded Good Grief Festival, a public engagement initiative which has now reached over 27,000 people.

Dr Emily Harrop is a Research Fellow at the Marie Curie Research Centre, Cardiff University, where she is theme lead for Bereavement. Her background is in the qualitative social sciences, and her current research interests focus on pre and post bereavement experiences and support needs of family members, supportive interventions and approaches to bereavement care, and patient and family experiences of living and coping with advanced disease. She has published extensively on these topics and is Editor in Chief of Bereavement (

About the seminar series 

The Cicely Saunders Institute Open Seminar Series events are free to attend.

This seminar is worth CPD (1 credit) pending from the Royal College of Physicians.

The series aim is to optimise opportunities for local, national and international networking within palliative care and rehabilitation. We facilitate seminars to assist in improving practice, education and policy, and the integration of research and clinical endeavours.


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