End of Life Care

Creating A Culture Of Organ And Tissue Donation Saves Lives

William Osler Health System | Posted 04.29.2016 | Canada Living
William Osler Health System

The shift in the culture has meant that every department at Osler -- from the ER to the OR -- now see it as a priority that all families are given the opportunity to choose donation. Families can find hope in knowing that there is the potential to save eight lives through organ donation and up to 75 more through tissue donation.

Planning For End Of Life Care When There Is No Next Of Kin

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre | Posted 04.14.2016 | Canada Living
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

If you have no close blood relatives, it makes sense to wonder what will happen when your health fails. Living Wills often aren't comprehensive enough to cover the range of issues you will be facing. Who can help you if you can no longer speak for yourself? Let's find out.

Physician-Assisted Dying Isn't Always A Choice For The Vulnerable

Jennifer Chandler | Posted 03.14.2016 | Canada Living
Jennifer Chandler

One of the consistent worries voiced throughout Canada's long national discussion of physician assisted dying is the desire to protect vulnerable people. One fear is that people with disabilities may be directly pressured or coerced into consenting to medical aid in dying. More insidiously though, vulnerable people may come to desire death due to a lack of any reasonable alternative to their suffering. For this reason, many have called for us to redouble our attention to providing access to high quality palliative care so that people are not driven toward medically assisted death by uncontrolled pain.

Rebecca Zamon

The Most Important Conversation Cancer Patients Can Have

HuffingtonPost.com | Rebecca Zamon | Posted 02.04.2016 | Canada Living

Talking about the end of your life must be part of your diagnosis.

Why Doctors Must Change How They Medicate Patients

John Muscedere | Posted 01.05.2016 | Canada Living
John Muscedere

Using non-beneficial medications or failing to offer comfort medications to chronically ill patients is potentially harmful, time-consuming and simply bad medical care. Unnecessary or unwarranted medical interventions, including medications, are also costly to the healthcare system. It's time to embrace new ways of thinking.

Canadians Need To Be Having End-Of-Life Conversations

Michelle Howard | Posted 01.05.2016 | Canada Living
Michelle Howard

Studies have shown that people who have end-of-life conversations with their doctors and family members are much more likely to be satisfied with their care, and their caregivers are less likely to suffer from depression, or left wondering if they made the right decisions for their loved ones.

The Serious Legal Problem With Do-Not-Recuscitate Policies

Dr Charles Wright | Posted 04.19.2015 | Canada Politics
Dr Charles Wright

The need for people also to make advance directives (often called living wills) and to discuss them with family is greater than ever as medical technology advances, but there is a serious legal problem. You may have an advance directive signed in perfect health clearly stating your wishes, but if and when you become incompetent, current law in some provinces permits your next of kin or power of attorney to ignore it. Surely new legislation must recognize and prevent this potential abuse that most people would find offensive and unacceptable.

When You Might Want to Say No to CPR

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre | Posted 04.13.2015 | Canada Living
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

There are many common misconceptions about CPR -- created, in part, by prime-time medical television programs showing patients being brought back almost miraculously from the brink of death. There's no doubt that CPR can be a lifesaver in certain situations. But CPR is not quite as successful as it's portrayed on TV.

Ontario Doctors Who Refuse Treatment On Moral Grounds Must Give Referral: Court

CP | Paola Loriggio, The Canadian Press | Posted 02.10.2015 | Canada Living

TORONTO - Ontario doctors must obtain consent from patients or their caregivers before withholding or turning off life-support, the province's medical...

Most Canadians Have No Plan For Their End of Life Treatment

Daren Heyland | Posted 07.27.2014 | Canada Living
Daren Heyland

Imagine, one day, without any warning, you find yourself in a hospital in a life-threatening situation, unable to communicate. Who would speak for you and make health care decisions on your behalf? That's a question that all Canadians need to contemplate -- but recent studies indicate that most of us have not.

New Quebec Gov't Brings Back ‘Dying With Dignity' Bill

CBC | Posted 07.22.2014 | Canada Politics

Quebec’s new Liberal government reintroduced the end-of-life care bill today as it was before the election call in March — when it was only steps...

How to Die Well

Harvey Max Chochinov | Posted 07.10.2014 | Canada Living
Harvey Max Chochinov

If all this sounds too daunting, here is some language you might want to consider. Imagine turning to the person you have in mind and begin by saying something like, "I love you." If that feels like a stretch, you can always start with: "Look, I care about you, most of the time" or "What matters to you matters to me."

Does Sunnybrook Care More About Quality of Death Than Quality of Life?

Kathleen Finlay | Posted 04.27.2014 | Canada Politics
Kathleen Finlay

Should a hospital really have something called a "Quality Dying Initiative?" Apparently, Toronto's Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre thinks so. And because it is Canada's largest teaching hospital, what it does carries considerable weight with hospitals across the country.

Money For Making Dying More Comfortable

CP | Tamsyn Burgmann, The Canadian Press | Posted 05.25.2013 | Canada British Columbia

VANCOUVER - If grief wasn't enough on learning his mother was dying of pancreatic cancer, there was more heartache for Stephen Roberts over his Mom's ...

Quebec Is Keeping the Assisted Death Debate Alive -- With Dignity

Adam Kingsmith | Posted 03.19.2013 | Canada
Adam Kingsmith

It's time to shift away from the messy public spectacles regarding euthanasia. Instead let's follow Quebec's lead -- Canadians everywhere should be able to choose from a full range of end-of-life options, including -- if the prerequisites are met, the option of a medically assisted suicide. There aren't really any scary precedents or slippery slopes here. What there is, is an alternative to an existence of suffering and pain that should, and can be afforded to a terminally ill, palliative treated, mentally competent adult.