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Launch of New End of Life Care Institute Highlights Gap in Canadian Health Care

Medical Expert Sees Need for Expanded Investment into Palliative Care

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PRLog - Oct. 31, 2012 - COQUITLAM, British Columbia -- This past week saw the launch of a new institute dedicated to multi-disciplinary end-of-life care. http://www.edmontonjournal.com/health/Covenant+Health+launches+Palliative+Life+Care+Institute/7406222/story.html (http://www.edmontonjournal.com/health/Covenant+Health+launches+Palliative+Life+Care+Institute/7406222/story.html) Housed at the Grey Nuns Hospital in Edmonton, Alberta, the new initiative aims to broaden both research and practice in palliative medicine. Welcomed by many in the field, Dr. Gordon Giddings hopes that this private initiative will highlight the need for similar investments in the public sector.

Dr. Giddings, author of Dying in the Land of Enchantment: a doctor's journey, is a well-known Canadian physician currently acting as the Program Director for the University of Western Ontario's Palliative Medicine Residency Program. While he himself has been part of a number of endeavours to broaden and improve the practice of palliative care, he believes there remains a general lack of commitment to providing the necessary resources and services to those who need them.

"It's wonderful to see that the people of Alberta will benefit from the institute, but it begs the question: what about the rest of the country? A real, concerted effort needs to take place to implement these kinds of programs across the country," says Giddings.

He went on to state that the relatively small amount of attention paid at the government level to palliative health care feels disconnected from the ethics of our system:

"As a compassionate country, we need to commit to compassionate care throughout the entire life course. Quality palliative care cannot be viewed as a luxury, it's an absolute health care necessity."

Dr. Giddings is a noted author and essayist who speaks frequently on issues of death and dying and the practice of palliative medicine. For information on Dying in the Land of Enchantment and to read his blog, visit: http://gordongiddings.wordpress.com/


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