Today our SUCCESS STORY is about Diana V. Nevzorova. She graduated from RSMU Faculty of General Medicine in 1998. Now she is the main specialist in palliative care in the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation and the Chairperson of the Hospice Association Board:

- I always dreamt of becoming a doctor. I never thought about any other job. In the childhood I imagined as if I were a doctor and treated my toys, pets and members of the family. When I was a student I decided to become an obstetrician. I attended special courses and did shifts at a hospital. But sometimes things do not depend on us. So I had to change my specialization to Oncology. I learnt Gynecologic Oncology and Radiology and finished a corresponding residency program at Obninsk Institute for Medical Radiology.

If you ask me if I ever thought I would do any scientific research, the answer will be “definitely not”. But in the 2000s it was very difficult to get a job as a doctor, whereas researchers were welcome. That fact influenced my decision to do science. As a result, I earned a PhD.

Frankly speaking, I didn’t plan to work in palliative care. It happened accidentally. But looking back now I come to the conclusion that there was nothing accidental in it. I couldn’t help supporting dying people and members of their families.

The thing is that oncologists, neurologists, GPs etc. treat patients trying to cure them. When there is no hope to cure a disease and the person is dying doctors get upset as they have lost the battle for life and the only thing they can do is to wait. Palliative care teaches that there should be no losers in this fight. Dealing with terminally ill people doctors should keep on improving the quality of their patients’ lives, no matter how much time they have left. If they succeed, they win the battle.

In 2004 I got acquainted with Vera Millionshikova, the Head of the First Moscow Hospice. She showed me a different side of being a doctor. I didn’t hesitate to become a part of her team.

It’s been 15 years since my career in palliative care started. I spend every day learning, teaching, conducting researches and, what is the most important, helping dying people. I’m absolutely sure that many years ago I did the right choice.

Dear colleagues and recent graduates, I invite you to join specialists in palliative care. Our patients and their relatives need you!