Viki Kind is a clinical bioethicist, professional speaker and hospice volunteer. Her award winning book, The Caregiver’s Path to Compassionate Decision Making: Making Choices For Those Who Can’t, guides families, conservators and other professionals through the difficult process of making decisions for those who have lost capacity. Her newly released book, The Caregiver’s Path: Resource Workbook, Conversation Guide and Visual Toolkit, provides uniquely designed communication tools for managing challenging conversations such as evaluating danger and risk, managing guilt and denial, end-of-life decisions, and helping the family know when it is time to create a new care plan.
Viki is known as “The People’s Bioethicist,” because she is a rare individual who bridges two worlds, that of the health care professional and of the family struggling to make the right decision. Viki spends much of her time speaking at conferences out in the community teaching patients and family caregivers how to make better decisions regarding their health, life and end-of-life.
She also lectures across the United States teaching professionals to have integrity, compassion and to improve care through better communication and ethical frameworks. Patients, families and professionals love Viki’s practical approach to dealing with ethically challenging dilemmas. Her recent experience as an expert witness for a court case where an advance healthcare directive failed has inspired her to create a set of tools to increase advance directive success by making them personalized and meaningful instead of generic.
Viki provides bioethics consultation and support for many hospitals in the Los Angeles area. She also provides private consultations for individuals who are struggling to make difficult decisions. She holds a master’s degree in bioethics from the Medical College of Wisconsin and a bachelor’s degree in speech communication from California State University at Northridge. She has specialized training in mediation and cultural negotiation from Pepperdine University and UCLA. Viki is an honorary board member of the Well Spouse Association. She has also been a caregiver for many years for six members of her family.
Viki recently keynoted four Alzheimer’s Association conferences in Wisconsin as well as in Monterey, California. Spoke at the National Geriatric Care Manager’s conference, National n4a conference, Texas and California NASW conferences, National Elder Law Foundation conference, National AHCA/NCAL conference, Mid-American Institute on Aging conference, the Washington, Idaho, Florida and Texas Guardian conferences and many Area Agency on Aging conferences. She has lectured to physician audiences at over 400 events.
“Thanks so much for the wonderful presentation this morning. What a fantastic program. The feedback was so positive. Your material hit home and had people raving as they were headed out the door. Folks were so happy to have something practical to take back and use…both personally and professionally. Your personality and words touch people’s hearts deeply.” Diane D. Baughn, Alzheimer’s Association – Milwaukee
“Viki’s book is an excellent guide for families left struggling and feeling overwhelmed when making decisions for those who are incapacitated. The tone is conversational, examples familiar and explanations simple and clear. With comfort and assurance, decisions are made systematically, while respecting the wishes of the individual. Every caregiver should read this guide before there is a crisis.”
Edna Ballard, MSW, ACSW, Duke Family Support Program; Bryan Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center