Approximately $43,000 was raised by the Rainbow Hospice Foundation for Consider the Conversation: A Documentary on a Taboo Subject and $44,000 for Consider the Conversation 2: Stories about Cure, Relief, and Comfort. These funds helped cover some, but not all, production expenses.
In order to complete the films, producers Michael Bernhagen and Terry Kaldhusdal donated 7,500 hours of their time – 3,500 for Consider the Conversation: A Documentary on a Taboo Subject and 4,000 for Consider the Conversation 2: Stories about Cure, Relief, and Comfort – and spent some of their own money where necessary.
Unfortunately, none of the 23 grant applications they submitted to various foundations for additional funding related to production and distribution of the films were accepted.
In September of 2013, producer Michael Bernhagen experienced a medical crisis because of the stress associated with this part of the production process. From that point forward, attempts by the producers to raise funds through grant applications ceased.
Ultimately, they decided shorten several chapters of the film as well as cut How Doctors Die (featuring numerous doctors answering a question about their own end-of-life wishes) and Beware (featuring the late Sherwin Nuland, MD giving advice to the young people of today wanting to become the doctors of tomorrow) from what eventually aired on public television. As a consequence, neither chapter ever aired on public television.
In the fall of 2014, however, the producers decided to release the original version of the film, now known as the “Director’s cut”, on DVD.
Consider the Conversation: A Theatrical Film Presentation and Community Conversation
Centered around their multiple award-winning film, Consider the Conversation: A Documentary on a Taboo Subject, this program is designed to create a major media event and includes: 1) a private reception with friends and supporters of the event, 2) a musical prelude featuring the recorded music of Steve Price, RN, 3) a welcome and important message for the community from the local host, 4) an introduction of the film by Terry Kaldhusdal, 5) a big screen presentation of the documentary, 6) a DVD signing, 7) end-of-life care information booths and professionals, and 8) either an audience talk back session involving the producers or a live panel discussion moderated by Michael Bernhagen and featuring Terry Kaldhusdal and local experts.
This presentation is required to be held in a theatrical setting and the event underwriter is entitled to proceeds from ticket sales. As part of the event, Mike and Terry are more than happy to interview with local newspaper, radio and/or television outlets.
Consider the Conversation: Moving from “What Is” to “What Could Be” (the presentation that helped inspire the Wisconsin Medical Society to launch Honoring Choices Wisconsin)
During this 90-minute talk (two hours with optional audience Q&A), Mike and Terry provide behind-the-scenes perspective into the making of Consider the Conversation: A Documentary on a Taboo Subject. In particular, they: 1) share moving stories from this important grassroots effort to inspire dialogue about end-of-life wishes, 2) screen and analyze several clips from the documentary, and 3) discuss how medical professionals can overcome obstacles such as lack of time, training and funding to provide excellent end-of-life care.
Consider the Conversation 2: A Theatrical Film Presentation and Community Conversation
Patterned after a similar program featuring their first film (see above), co-producers Michael Bernhagen and Terry Kaldhusdal partner with local organizations to facilitate a theatrical presentation of the Director’s cut of Consider the Conversation 2: Stories about Cure, Relief, and Comfort. This event includes: 1) interviews with local media, 2) a VIP reception for friends and supporters of the event, 3) a welcome and important message for the community from the local host, 4) an introduction of the film by Terry Kaldhusdal, 5) a big screen presentation of the documentary, 6) a live talk back session between the audience and producers or a panel discussion moderated by Michael Bernhagen and including Terry and local experts, 7) palliative care and advance care planning information booths and professionals, and 8) a DVD signing.
This presentation is required to be held in a theatrical setting and the event underwriter is entitled to proceeds from ticket sales.
Consider the Conversation 2: Behind the Scenes and Up Close
American medicine’s success at fighting disease and extending life has created a new problem. That is, the vast majority of patients can now expect to die in a place (a hospital or nursing home) and in a way (with increased quantity, but reduced quality, of life) that most wouldn’t choose if only asked. Talking about dying, which is as natural as birth, is now taboo. And, the reality is patients and families are suffering needlessly. It is a problem we never intended to create and one that must be solved, but how?
In this 90-minute presentation (two hours with optional audience Q&A), co-producers Terry Kaldhusdal and Michael Bernhagen provide “behind the scenes” perspective into the making of Consider the Conversation 2: Stories about Cure, Relief, and Comfort, an Emmy-nominated documentary that examines the effect of American medicine’s success on the patient/doctor relationship. In particular, they: 1) screen and analyze several clips from the film, 2) share moving stories from seriously ill patients and the doctors who care for them, and 3) shed light on the important role communication plays in helping both patient and doctor navigate the murky waters of severe chronic disease.
Alacare Home Health & Hospice, Birmingham, Alabama
Aurora Health Care, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Beloit Regional Hospice, Beloit, Wisconsin
Chicago End-of-Life Care Coalition, Chicago, Illinois
Columbia/St. Mary’s Hospital, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Continuing Care Coordinators of Southeastern Wisconsin
Dane County Continuity of Care Group, Madison, Wisconsin
Dane County Committee on Aging, Madison, Wisconsin
End-of-Life Coalition of Southeastern Wisconsin
Fort HealthCare, Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin
The HOPE of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin
Horizon Home Care and Hospice, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Marshall Medical Center, Placerville, California
Mayo Clinic Health System Home Health and Hospice, Eau Claire, Wisconsin
Medical Technology Management Institute, Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
Mountain Area Health Education Center, Asheville, North Carolina
OSF Saint Anthony Medical Center, Rockford, Illinois
ProHealth Care, Waukesha, Wisconsin
Rainbow Hospice Care, Jefferson, Wisconsin
Rockford Health System, Rockford, Illinois
Saint Luke’s Health System Home Care & Hospice, Kansas City, Missouri
Sharon S. Richardson Community Hospice, Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin
SwedishAmerican Health System, Rockford, Illinois
ThedaCare at Home, Neenah, Wisconsin
Unity Hospice, DePere, Wisconsin
UnityPoint Health-Meriter Hospital, Madison, Wisconsin
University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center, Madison, Wisconsin
University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Department of Communication Studies
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Department of Communication
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Helen Bader School of Social Welfare
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Division of Communication
Washington State Hospital Association, Seattle, Washington
Washington State Medical Association, Seattle, Washington
Watertown Regional Medical Center, Watertown, Wisconsin
Wisconsin Assisted Living Association, Madison, Wisconsin
Wisconsin Department of Health Services, Division of Quality Assurance, Madison, Wisconsin
Wisconsin Medical Society, Madison, Wisconsin
Wisconsin Nurses Association, Madison, Wisconsin
World Presidents’ Organization, Wisconsin Chapter