The Canadian Researchers at the End of Life Network (CARENET) is a group of health care professionals from across the country that collaborate with each other to understand and improve palliative and end-of-life care.

Advance care planning (ACP), involving discussions between patients, families and healthcare professionals on future healthcare decisions, in advance of anticipated impairment in decision-making capacity, improves satisfaction and end-of-life care while respecting patient autonomy. It usually results in the creation of a written advanced care directive (ACD). This systematic review examines the impact of ACP on several outcomes (including symptom management, quality of care and healthcare utilisation) in older adults (>65years) across all healthcare settings. Read more about the study.

This month the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association (CHPCA) is calling on the government to make hospice palliative care a priority with its month-long campaign running from October 8 – November 10.

  1. Objective: To assess the feasibility, acceptability and clinical sensibility of a novel survey, the advance care planning (ACP) Engagement Survey, in various healthcare settings. See the article on BMJ Open. 

A new CIHR-funded study conducted by CARENET members and researchers at the University of Calgary will develop and evaluate a family-partnered care pathway for critically ill older patients (>70 yrs.) admitted to the intensive care unit. Read a synopsis of the project.

Read about an ICU nurse's first hand experience with family-centred care in the ICU. 

 

Practicing healthcare professionals and graduates exiting training programs are often ill-equipped to facilitate important discussions about end-of-life care with patients and their families. We conducted a systematic review to evaluate the effectiveness of educational interventions aimed at providing healthcare professionals with training in end-of-life communication skills, compared to usual curriculum.

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As part of the 2016 Budget, Ontario is promising to invest and additional $75 million over three years to provide patients with more options and access to palliative and end-of-life care.
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A UBC researcher is pointing towards the need for oncologists to have advance care planning and end-of-life discussions with cancer patients sooner rather than later.

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When people plan for the future, they tend to stick to milestones like education, first home and maybe even retirement.

It can be much more difficult to take on the less pleasant, more final milestones like dealing with cancer or incapacity. 

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