Learning Compassionate Care Through Palliative Care Practice in Primary Care Communities
The work of palliative care is about compassion: recognizing suffering or the potential for suffering and acting to alleviate this. This fellowship considers palliative care practice in a rural community as the integrating principle for considering: how patients’ voices from all cultures can contribute to the planning and delivery of healthcare services; healthcare providers’ perceptions and challenges with this practice and; the integration of health professions students into compassionate workplace learning environments. The fellowship projects will explore how the community, the workplace, health professionals and learners are interwoven in a process of learning and practicing palliative care in a culturally diverse rural community on Manitoulin Island. Learning will be conceptualized as a process of ‘becoming’: a generative entanglement of individuals, workplace and community cultures. The focus for the first year of the fellowship will be exploring community involvement, creating opportunities for engagement and dialogue around death and dying, and developing learning tools for palliative care that are inclusive of an Indigenous perspective. The second year will focus on the clinical workplace: how learners and practitioners understand and appreciate palliative care and how compassionate learning environments are created and sustained.