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Dr. Doris Howell


Women's History Month: 2012 Honoree

Dr. Doris Howell

Doris A. Howell, M.D. is devoted to improving the lives of others, having practiced medicine for over 50 years. When first introduced to the hospice concept in 1968, Dr. Howell embraced this radical departure from the established way of dealing with the dying and their families. In 1977, Dr. Howell, along with a group of caring individuals, established San Diego Hospice, the first hospice program in the country.

In addition to patient care, San Diego Hospice is the first and only academic hospice program of its kind in the region that serves as a model throughout the nation. The Institute for Palliative Medicine at San Diego Hospice is responsible for education and research and hosts the largest physician specialty training program in the country.


She has received numerous awards including a 2006 honor by the Moores UCSD Cancer Center for her pioneering work in hospice and palliative care nationally, and for inspiring a new consultation service called the Doris A. Howell Palliative Consultation Service. This service is designed to enhance care for patients and their families by helping formulate goals.