Relational practice and pandemic restrictions: A qualitative study of palliative care nursing

On January 19th 2021, hub members David Kenneth Wright and Kim McMillan gave a research to practice presentation, focusing on the ethical implications of pandemic restrictions for palliative care nursing. See below for the abstract, and video, of this event, which was co-hosted by the UBC Institute for Healthy Living and Chronic Disease Prevention, the Canadian Association of Psychosocial Oncology, and the North Okanagan Hospice Society.

Abstract: For patients with progressive, life-limiting illnesses and their families, physical distancing measures – and the resultant social isolation they produce – are at odds with the central role of social connection in palliative care. This disconnect was our starting point for an ongoing interview study with Canadian nurses, about the ethical issues they are facing when providing palliative care during COVID-19. This presentation will present emerging findings from this study, to explore the ways in which relational practice is supported or thwarted in the current pandemic context.

#GriefLiteracy: Join the movement!

On June 23 2020, our research hub presented a webinar about grief literacy, jointly hosted by the Canadian Nurses Association and featuring invited presentations from grief scholars Susan Cadell and Mary Ellen Macdonald. See below for the abstract, and video, of this event.


Grief literacy aims to improve how everyday citizens can understand grief and support one another in it. This concept is embedded in a public health commitment to understanding and addressing the loneliness and isolation caused by grief. The goal of grief literacy is to empower individuals, networks and communities to support the bereaved among us with everyday acts of kindness and compassion. For greater grief literacy, change needs to occur at all levels. While certainly some bereaved people need professional support, for many a salient social response is community-based acknowledgment and validation. 

This event will be led by two originators of the Grief Literacy concept. Professor Mary Ellen Macdonald will provide an overview of Grief Literacy, its recent development by an international team of grief scholars,and its relationship to public health palliative care. Professor Susan Cadell will operationalize the concept of Grief Literacy by providing vignettes that can be used for education and practice. In this talk, the concept of Grief Literacy will also be connected to the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic. There will be time reserved for open discussion with our two speakers. Michael Villeneuve, CNA Chief Executive Officer, will provide opening remarks.