End-of-life care has been a hot topic in medicine for at least 10 years now. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and other charitable organizations have poured huge sums of money into efforts to improve end-of-life care. Much has been learned in these years, but I think the most important lesson can be summed up as follows fairly simply: most physicians and nurses are inadequately trained to provide high-quality, compassionate end-of-life care. Most of us have had no formal training in advance care planning, communicating bad news, communicating about and identifying the goals of care, pain management, medical futility, and legal, spiritual, and social issues of patients nearing the end of life. Is it any wonder that the public is not educated? We have failed to educate ourselves to be capable of educating the public.