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Last Updated: Thursday, 14 July, 2005, 20:55 GMT 21:55 UK
Hospice founder Dame Cicely dies
Dame Cicely Saunders
Dame Cicely received numerous awards for her life's work
Dame Cicely Saunders, the woman who founded the modern hospice movement has died, aged 87.

She died at St Christopher's Hospice, south London, the renowned centre she set up in the 1960s, her family said.

Tributes are being paid to Dame Cicely, who was honoured in 1980. She had had cancer for many years.

A trained doctor, she once described dying as "physically very hard work". Her centre linked pain control with compassionate care and research.

She was made a Dame of the British Empire in 1980 and awarded the Order of Merit in 1989.

She was a wonderful person and I was deeply fond of her
Sheila Hancock
Actress and St Christopher's vice-president

She was given many other awards for her life's work, including the world's largest humanitarian award, the 1m Conrad N Hilton Humanitarian Prize, in 2001.

Princess Alexandra said she was "privileged" to have known the Roedean and Oxford-educated Dame Cicely.

She described her as "a very remarkable human being who will be long remembered for all her pioneering work in palliative care and, as patron of St Christopher's Hospice".

Actress Sheila Hancock, a vice-president of St Christopher's, said the hospice had helped her look after her first husband when he was ill with cancer.

"After he died, I got involved with Dame Cicely's work and the hospice, and we lectured together on several occasions. She was a wonderful person and I was deeply fond of her," she said.

Chief executive of the hospice Barbara Munroe said: "Dame Cicely's vision and work has transformed the care of the dying and the practice of medicine in the UK and throughout the world. She is an inspiration to us all."

A memorial service will be held in a few months' time.

Hear about the life and work of Dame Cicely

Hospice founder honoured
15 Aug 01 |  Health


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