Kath’s Conference Highlights – CHPCA 2017

Kath’s Conference Highlights – CHPCA 2017

Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Conference 
The Canadian Conference followed immediately after the International conference. Jeanne Weis, (CLPNA), Stephanie Buchanan and I delivered our presentation titled,  “From Competencies to Curriculum, Classroom and the Clinical Setting”. It was right near the end of the conference, and I was so grateful to Cheri Purpur, Rose DeAngelais, Carol Banks and others who stayed for this session. We missed Andrea Leatherdale who helped prepare the presentation but was unable to attend.

The CHPCA Nurses Group hosted a Nurses Symposium and led discussion of ways to operationalize the recommendations from Palliative Care Matters  https://www.palliativecarematters.ca/ More to follow from the Nurses Group.
(Be sure to update your membership in the Nurses group when you renew your CHPCA membership. It is a ONE STEP process. If you have problems, do not hesitate to contact Laureen in the membership chair at the CHPCA office.

As with the Public Health Conference, there was a strong focus on Compassionate Communities. For examples of compassionate communities, you might like to check out what Pallium.ca is doing, or the BC Center for Palliative Care.

One of my favorite presentations was by Jackie Santiago and Judith Wiens from Red River College in MB. They did a great presentation titled, “The Challenges of Educating Nursing Students About Medical Aid in Dying.”
Their presentation included great discussion, (rationale for addressing this topic in depth in fourth year vs early in the program), outline of topics addressed including ethical principles and legal issues, and response from students. Good work.
Dr Kelli Stadjuhar in her opening plenary address asked the question,

“Who does hospice serve well?” and

“Who does hospice serve least?”

She shared a personal story of her dear friend with bladder cancer and how she was so well cared for and supported. She then shared the story of a person who became homeless, was dying, and through the support of a friend was able to find a home on a float a ways out from the shore… and how a research assistant provided him with the supports to get him into hospice when death was imminent. There are programs developing to address the needs of this population, for example, “PEACH” in Toronto, and the mobile team in Calgary. Check these options out.

Does your community have palliative resources for homeless and vulnerable populations? Please do share the resources and links here.


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Courtney Murrell is a PSW who works in hospice palliative care.

When she is not at work, she is spending time with her family, going on hikes or writing. Courtney is a lifelong learner and loves to share her passion for writing as a wellness practice.

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