• Patient Engagement

    Our Humanity is the Greatest Healing Power we can Offer

    The personal experience of excellent, compassionate care convinces me that our humanity is the greatest healing power we can offer. When my Mom developed significant cognitive deficits, it became obvious that it was impossible for her to stay in her home. She had lived there alone for over 30 years, far from neighbours and the…


  • Healthcare Professional Burnout and Resilience

    Stressing over Compassion

    “Watching Someone Die and Feeling – Nothing”  writes Dr. Seema Marwaha. I’ve been thinking a lot about the stress she described over the lack of emotional response she had in the face of a patient tragedy. I was struck with the magnitude of her aspiration to find a balance between managing the needs of her…


  • History of Medicine

    How Smallpox Impacted the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia from 1800-1867

    “…We were strong but you were stronger, and we were conquered. …Before you came we had no sickness…now small pox, measles and fevers destroy our tribe…The whole of our people in Nova Scotia is about 1500. Of that number 106 died in 1846, and the number of deaths in 1848 was, we believe, 94. We…


  • Healthcare Professional Burnout and Resilience

    Is Healthcare Innovation Simply an Act of Compassion?

    Northern Ontario covers 87% of Ontario’s land mass, is inhabited by 6% of the province’s population, and has the highest rates of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular, and respiratory disease in Ontario. Disease prevalence is highest in the 13% of Indigenous Northerners. Providing Northern Ontario health care in the future will be challenging as the lifestyles of…


  • Healthcare Professional Burnout and Resilience

    How I Choose to Repair the World

    I’m often asked why I do what I do. Actually, it’s rare that someone questions my decision to look after sick people as a physician. People also rarely wonder why I chose to get married or to have children. On the other hand, my academic interests – the focus of my research and educational work…


  • Patient Engagement

    Patient Engagement in Health Professions Admissions: Assessing Readiness for Health Professions Education

    The recent 2017 AMS Phoenix conference entitled – Bringing Compassion to Healthcare – Impact of Technology on the Delivery of Compassionate Patient-Centered Care – was an excellent conference. This was an outcome that I expected. However, an unexpected outcome for me related to the production of my Phoenix website profile videotape session which took place…


  • Compassionate Care Curriculum

    Dying to Stay in Rural Communities

    A ‘good death’ is an concept that underlies the practice of palliative care: that at end of life, the dying and their loved ones are cared for with dignity, trust, a sense of control, respectful communication, minimized burden, and maximized relationships. When rural Canadians are asked to describe a ‘good rural death’ there is an…


  • Compassionate Care Curriculum

    Positive Dilemmas: Our Journey in Developing a New Online Curriculum

    Our team is designing, implementing, and evaluating a new online curriculum (i.e., 12 week, 39-hour course) that provides clinician-educators with information on and strategies for actively involving patients in health professions education (HPE). Our initial plan is that this curriculum will target students in the Diploma, Master, or Doctorate in HPE at the University of…


  • Healthcare Professional Burnout and Resilience

    Humanizing the Opioid Crisis Through Compassionate Spaces

    In the last year, 2800 Canadians died from opioid related causes and 16 Canadians are hospitalized each day. – CIHI Opioid Related Harms in Canada.  The opioid crisis has been a growing part of our public consciousness with the media, (both national and local) governments and health care institutions profiling and addressing the immeasurable suffering and loss…


  • History of Medicine

    A Brief History of “Off-Label” Use of Amytal in Psychiatry

    In my AMS funded scholarship I investigated published medical and psychiatric cases of uses amytal in an “off label”, published 1920 – 1950. In order to reconstruct a “label” of uses, I recorded successive versions of pharmacology textbooks. By reviewing Goodman and Gillman’s The Pharmacologic Basis of Therapeutics, I was able to learn conditions which…