“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”

Welcome to the learner portal for the Virtual Advanced Care Academy!

Use this resource to access materials and and tools in support of your journey.

Academy Faculty


Mimi Pattison, MD, FAAHPM
Regional Medical Director

Dr. Pattison is a Hospice and Palliative Medicine physician with more than two decades of clinical experience in the field. She is the Regional Medical Director for Virginia Mason Franciscan Health Hospice and Palliative Care services. Dr. Pattison’s medical interests include Communication in medicine, system integration of palliative care, and access for persons with dementia to palliative care and hospice.


Christine Cofer, MD, HS, HMDC
Hospice and Palliative Medicine

Christine completed residency training in Internal Medicine and fellowship in Palliative Medicine at the University of Washington in 2010, and since then has been a Hospice and Palliative Care physician with Commonspirit / VMFH. She divides her clinical time between inpatient and outpatient hospice care. She also provides teaching and mentorship to residents and fellows and facilitates communication skills courses. Christine’s work as a clinician-educator centers on guiding clinicians to practice communication skills that amplify patient priorities, facilitate shared decision making, and achieve goal-concordant care, with the goal of enhancing clinicians’ professional quality of life as well as patient care.


Fransje Slothouber Giles, ARNP, DNP, ACHPN
Inpatient Hospice and Palliative Medicine Nurse Practitioner

Fransje is a nurse practitioner with nearly two decades of experience in caring for pediatric and adult patients facing serious and life limiting diseases. Currently, her clinical time is spent assisting adult patients with management of severe symptom burden associated with terminal conditions as well as facilitating goals of care conversations to guide complex medical decision making. Witnessing the healing potential of meaningful connection, Fransje is passionate about improving communication across the continuum of care and amongst the interdisciplinary healthcare team. She hopes to share with others the readily available communication skills that have allowed her to experience the joy of bringing authentic curiosity to caring for patients and facilitating high quality care tailored to meet each individual patient’s unique needs.

What Participants are Saying...

Tara Taylor


“Story building is amazing and efficient. I have always considered myself a good communicator. Now I realize I was focusing too much on telling the medical story rather than listening to learn about the patient….Thank you all for supporting a culture of safety where we can have honest conversations and learn better ways to deliver patient centered care more efficiently.”

Matthew Metsker


“I could not have anticipated how significantly it would impact my approach to patient care as a hospitalist. The combination of learning, practicing, and witnessing the navigation of these complex issues even changed how I saw some of my personal relationships….I'm not sure if anything has ever stood me so firmly in another person's shoes. The Academy reminded us of how sacred the journey though life is, and it will stick with me forever."

Nicole Johnson


“This is the only course I have taken where I use 90% of the information every single day.”

Jessica Coulter


“I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to go through the Advanced Conversation Academy…. I learned a framework for tough conversations, whether at the end-of-life or in everyday conversation with patients and families. Our family medicine residents are able to build a toolkit for challenging conversations early in their training and are better equipped for their inpatient rotations. One of our third year residents told me it was the best conference they had attended during their family medicine training.”