Queen's University

End-of-life care issues to be explored at community event

 
2009-11-13

A public discussion about critical end-of-life care issues will help Queen's and Kingston's teaching hospitals mark National Health Research Day on Nov. 17.

 Organized by Professor of Medicine Daren Heyland, who is also the director of the Clinical Evaluation Research Unit at Kingston General Hospital, the forum will provide community members a chance to meet informally with doctors and researchers to explore issues, choices and decisions around death and end-of-life care.

 "People have indicated in our surveys that they would prefer less technology and more dignity and compassion for themselves and their loved ones when they become terminally ill," says Dr. Heyland, who is currently investigating the quality of life and survival of patients over 80 years old in intensive care units across Canada.

 "Yet increasingly we see supports and interventions that result in a poorer quality of life for all concerned. What's needed are more conversations among patients, family members, doctors and facility administrators," he suggests. "This public forum is intended to open up that kind of dialogue."

 Moderated by Dr. Heyland, the panel brings together doctors and researchers working in critical care, intensive care and palliative care at Queen's, KGH and Providence Care. The members include Drs. John Drover, Chris Frank, John Muscedere, Sue Moffat and Cori Schroder.

 The forum, to be held at 7pm in the lodge area of the Grizzly Grill Restaurant at 395 Princess St., is part of a national initiative called "Cafe Scientifiques" - events held across Canada to bring together experts and local residents in a relaxed atmosphere to talk about health-related issues of popular interest. They are sponsored by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

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