UBC Division of Palliative Care CME Day

UBC Division of Palliative Care CME Day

Review of Systems: Palliative Approaches in Diverse Settings

Target Audience:

Palliative care physicians, family physicians, nurse practitioners and nurses, pharmacists, students, residents, health administrators

  • Oct 23, 2020
Broadcast starts: 0815 AM PDT

Online from Vancouver BC


An invite to you...

The UBC Division of Palliative Care invites you to attend this series of 40-minute virtual presentations aim to share key messages learned from new Palliative Care initiatives in a variety of settings. These include urban emergency rooms, a rural hospice, a palliative outpatient clinic, vulnerable urban populations (including those with substance use disorders, unstable homing situations, and alternate gender identities), remote indigenous communities, and a “virtual PCU” in a community hospital. We will also have sessions on regional palliative care patient identification; starting a Nurse Practitioner service; and implementation of a COVID-19-adapted Serious Illness Conversation Guide. 

Each presentation will last 20-25 minutes, followed by 15-20 minutes of open discussion. Presenters are the multidisciplinary clinicians who led these initiatives.

The event is recommended for palliative care clinicians of all disciplines, health care managers, public health specialists, and anyone else interested in the development of palliative care services in any setting or health care system.

We hope you can join! 

The UBC Palliative Care CME Day Planning Committee 


This event is supported by:

  • Hsu & Hsieh Foundation
  • Canada Chinese Nurses Association





Subject to change 

08:00–08:15 Connect to Zoom  
08:15–08:30 Welcome & Opening Remarks Dr. Pippa Hawley

Triaging Patients in an Emergency Department — What Works Well and How EMRs Can Help/Advanced Care Planning Documents

1. Present some of the positive aspects of EMR in regards to the triaging of patients with a palliative diagnosis
2. How EMRs may help in effectively navigating Advance Care Directives, Goals of Care Conversations, and Levels of Interventions (legibly!)

Dr. Dave Williscroft 

How to Triage Patients in a Community: Lessons Learned from the New Palliative Care Hub in North Vancouver

1. Identify risk factors for patients to not receive palliative care Understand strategies to use routine data to identify palliative patient populations

Dr. Peter Edmunds
09:50–10:00 Stretch Break  

Lessons Learned from Opening a New Hospice Facility in a Small Community

1. Gain an understanding of the complexity of developing a rural hospice from the first spark to the opening day 
2. Understand the importance of bridging communication between the stakeholders 
3. Understand the challenges of staffing and running a small unit 
4. Understand the need to engage the community health care providers

Dr. Brenda Millar,
Dr. Judith Fothergill,
Jennifer Dunkin &
Philippa Parr


Creation of a Virtual PCU — Coming to you from Prince George

1. Identify challenges in providing palliative care virtually in a remote setting Developing a cohorting model within an acute care facility

Dr. Inban Reddy
11:20–12:00 Lunch Break  

Goals of Care Conversations with Diverse & Vulnerable Patients During the Covid-19 Pandemic

1. Access a straightforward best-practice approach to serious illness/goals of care conversations 
2. Recognize ways to adapt this patient-centred conversation during the COVID pandemic 
3. Distinguish ways to engage in these conversations with patients from diverse backgrounds and vulnerabilities

Dr. Marcus Greatheart &
Wallace Robinson


Our Experience in Setting up a Ambulatory Clinic —The Nuts and Bolts & Patient Needs and How to Manage Them

1. Understand the process of sub-specialty palliative ambulatory clinic development
2. Understand the types of patients who would benefit from a palliative approach to their cardiac disease and referral to a palliative care cardiology clinic
3. Appreciate the benefits of early palliative care

Dr. Lynn Straatman &
Dr. Shannon Bunn

13:20–13:30 Stretch Break  

Our Lessons Learned from Incorporating NPs into Community Palliative Care Teams — What Works Well

1. Provide rationale for incorporating NPs into palliative care teams
2. Identify needs/gaps that could be bridged with a NP palliative service
3. Describe steps necessary to introduce NPs to palliative care teams 
4. Describe the training NPs should go through to provide comprehensive palliative care
5. Identify the instrumental factors that facilitate successful role implementation 
6. Discuss challenges encountered in role development and implementation – solutions

Annabel Francis

Delivering Palliative Care at Home in Isolated Indigenous Communities

1. Be empowered to "think outside the box" in order to deliver compassionate and high level palliative care in a rural and remote setting
2. Come up with a comprehensive team to assist in the delivery of such care

Dr. Leah Seaman
14:50–15:00 Closing Remarks & Completion of Evaluations Dr. Pippa Hawley
15:00 Conference Ends  


Key Speakers

Conference Chair

Philippa Hawley, BMed, MD, FRCPC. 

Pippa came to Canada from the UK via New Zealand, and became a Palliative Medicine specialist via a roundabout route, including some clinical HIV research in Vancouver in the early ‘90s, 2 Internal Medicine residencies, and a self-directed 2 yr fellowship including 6 months in the UK. Pippa started the BC Cancer Agency’s Pain & Symptom Management/Palliative Care Program (PSMPC) in 1997, and is the Head of the UBC Division of Palliative Care.

Planning Committee Member

Adam Fowler MD. CCFP (PC).

Adam completed his B.A. (History) at the University of Saskatchewan prior to graduating with his M.D. in 2008. His Family Medicine residency was through Dalhousie University at its distributed learning site in Fredericton, New Brunswick. He completed his YAC in Palliative Care through the University of Ottawa. He spent the next two years as the senior physician at Hospice Waikato in Hamilton. He has worked at Lions Gate Hospital in North Vancouver since 2018. He is currently completing a Postgraduate Certificate in Science Communication at a distance with the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand. 

Planning Committee Member

Vincent Fruci MD, FRCPC (Anesthesiology).

My name is Vincent Fruci and I completed my Anesthesiology residency in Ottawa and I am currently in my  second year of the Palliative Medicine Subspecialty residency here at UBC. I hope that my dual training will allow for enrichment of both specialties. I did my undergraduate training in music (piano and voice) and right before entering medical school I was about to start a masters in choral conducting.  I am looking forward to learning with all of you at this year's conference

Planning Committee Member

Douglas McGregor MB ChB, FRCP(UK), MRCGP, BA, CCFP (PC).

Dr. Douglas McGregor trained in Internal Medicine and General Practice in the UK, with particular focus in Diabetes care. He came to Canada in 1991 and worked in the Vernon Cancer Centre until 2001 as Clinical Assistant in Oncology. During this time he developed his interest in Palliative Care. He worked in Vancouver as Regional Medical Director for Palliative Care with responsibility for Cottage Hospice and part time in BCCA Pain and Symptom Management clinic. In 2012 he received the BCCA Community Care Award. He has been Medical Director of Victoria Hospice for 8 years.

Shannon Bunn, MD, CCFP (PC).

Dr. Shannon Bunn is a palliative care physician in Vancouver. She completed medical school and residency in Family Medicine at the University of Toronto. She then returned home to Vancouver to complete a Year of Added Competency in Palliative Care at the University of British Columbia. Since 2016 she has practiced at the Palliative Care Unit at Vancouver General Hospital. She is also a Physician Co-Lead at the Nancy Chan Palliative Care Ambulatory Clinic. Her clinical interests include expanding access to early palliative care and palliative care in non-malignant disease. 

Jennifer Dunkin, BScPharm, RPh, CDE.

Jennifer is a pharmacist who has lived and worked in the Sea to Sky Corridor since 2010. With so many resources focusing on recreation and healthy living, she believes that there is a need for support for those at the end of their life, along with the loved ones they leave behind.

Her work in the area of palliative care alongside a team of passionate professionals encouraged her to become involved with the Sea to Sky Hospice Society. Jennifer joined the board in 2018 and took on the role of board chair in 2020. She hopes to be able to support the expansion of hospice programs and services to individuals living throughout the corridor and to get people talking about the complex issues surrounding end of life.

Peter Edmunds, MB, ChB, MSc (PM), CCFP(PC).  

Dr. Peter Edmunds is a family doctor and palliative care physician from the North Shore of Vancouver. He is the co-Medical Director for Home, Community & Palliative Care for Vancouver Coastal Health​. He did his subspecialty palliative care training through the University of Cardiff, UK. For his Masters he presented a project based on the work he and his team on the North Shore had done on identification and stratification of patients with palliative care needs. He was invited to present his work at the Royal Society of Medicine in London, UK

Judith Fothergill, MBChB  MRCP(UK).

Dr. Fothergill is a retired family physician who worked in Squamish from 1988-2016.  She was a Medical Director of Hilltop House Long Term Care Facility and Lead for Palliative Care Program. She was also the past Chair of Squamish Hospice Society and Lead for Sea to Sky Community Hospice Project.

Annabel Francis, MN-NP (F).

Annabel is a nurse practitioner at Fraser Health Authority. She is the palliative care provider at Laurel Place Hospice and the Newton, Surrey homecare palliative program. She completed her Bachelor of Science and Masters of Nursing programs at the University of British Columbia. Annabel wrote her thesis on Indigenous approaches to palliative care, and is particularly passionate about improving access to culturally safe, equity-oriented palliative care for Indigenous peoples. In her leisurely time, Annabel enjoys being active with her dog on the beautiful trails of B.C, playing guitar and traveling (in non-pandemic times).

Marcus Greatheart, MD, MCFP, MSW, RSW.

Dr. Marcus Greatheart brings a unique combination of skills knowledge and training to his work as a family physician in Vancouver, Canada. With over 25 years’ experience as a community educator, and a Masters degree in Social Work, he is exceptionally situated to provide care for the most complex patients with medical, mental health and psychosocial issues using strengths-based and trauma-Informed. He specializes in addictions, eldercare, LGBT health, and provides hormone and surgical assessment for transgender patients. He is a Clinical Instructor in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of British Columbia. His teaching with medical students and Residents focuses on communication skills and wellness in primary care. 

Brenda Millar, MD, CCFP, FCFP.

Brenda is a family physician having graduated from the UoA faculty of medicine in 1989. After completing her family practice residency at Memorial University in St. John’s, NFLD she practiced full spectrum family practice for 24 years in Grande Prairie, Alberta. She and her husband Dr. Garth Campbell relocated to Squamish in Dec 2016 to be closer to family and closer to the mountains for skiing, hiking and biking.

As her professional passions have always included end of life and seniors care she started to help Dr. Kristen Siemens with offering palliative care in the corridor. Once Dr. Siemens went on maternity leave in the fall of 2019, Brenda replaced her as lead physician for the palliative care service in the Sea to Sky corridor.

Her clinical focus is now split between hospice, palliative pain and sx management work and long term care. She works with Dr. Peter Bull to provide the palliative care service for the corridor.  She is very proud of the palliative team that has developed in the hospice uni and community home care  and feels strongly that the community is very fortunate to hav the W-B Foundation Sea to Sky Community Hospice as a vital component of this service.

Philippa (Pip) Parr, RN, CHPCN(C).

Pip holds a Bachelor in Nursing Sciences obtained through the Southland Polytechnic University in Invercargill, New Zealand. She is a nurse who has worked for the past 19years in palliative care. She became Canadian Nurses Association Certified in Palliative care the first year the examination was offered. Before working in the Sea To Sky area, she worked at Canuck Place Children’s Hospice for 18 years then heard a hospice was opening in her own community. Pip was part of the initial team setting up and starting the Sea To Sky, Whistler Blackcomb Foundation Community Hospice.  She has a passion for palliative care and is continuing to enjoy being part of the community in the Sea To Sky region.

Inban Reddy, MB BCh, MCFP(PC).

Dr. Inban Reddy is a full-time family physician and palliative care physician in Prince George.  He is Physician Lead for the Northern Health Palliative Care Program and instrumental in developing palliative care initiatives within the Health Authority to serve rural and remote communities in Northern Health.  He is also the President of the Section of Palliative Care Physician's for Doctors of BC.  Aside from work, he is an avid fly fisherman and love playing tennis whenever he gets the opportunity.

Wallace Robinson, MSW, RSW. 

Wallace has worked at Providence Health Care since 1993 in Social Work roles (Renal and HIV/AIDs programs) and is now the organization's Leader for Advance Care Planning. During the recent COVID outbreak at Holy Family Hospital, one of PHC's LTC sites, he helped staff the urgent support line created for family and friends who had loved ones affected by the outbreak.

Leah Seaman, MD, CCFP. 

Dr. Leah Seaman was born in Prince Rupert and grew up in Terrace in Northern BC, in an era when to drive there from southern Canada was akin to driving the Dempster (800+ km gravel highway from the Yukon to Tuktoyaktuk).  After high school, she spent 14 years at UBC, over about a 25 year span, earning a BSR (Physio and OT) and then, much later, an MD and a CCFP.  After the latter, she worked as a full-service Family Physician in Vancouver, Nelson, and Nakusp, BC.

Then, following 4 Arctic locums, and with the inspiration of Dr. Braam de Klerk, she and her family moved to Inuvik in the Beaufort-Delta region of the NWT in February of 2003—ostensibly for 18 months. They stayed and settled there, and raised both their sons. 

Dr. Seaman had been part of a dynamic team of physicians and nurses who serve the people of the Northwestern NWT.  This work included GP Obstetrics, General Clinics, ER shifts, Public Health, Homecare (including Palliative Care at home, and in hospital).  In 2016, she retired from the permanent staff and now return as a locum to a place that still feels like home to her—the patients, the colleagues, the friends, and the people who treat them as members of their extended families.  Since COVID-19, she has been doing virtual clinics for the Beau-Del from my home in the West Kootenays.

Lynn Straatman, MD, FRCPC. 

Dr. Straatman is a Cardiologist in Nancy Chan Cardiac Palliative Care, Cardio-Oncology and Cardiac Function clinics at Vancouver General Hospital, and the medical director of the Heart Failure Program at VGH. She currently holds grants to improve physician knowledge of Cost Related Non-adherence (CRNA) to prescription medications and possible solutions to the issue. Her research interests include transition of adult survivors of childhood cancer to adult care, the integration of palliative care into heart failure management, and education/support of family practitioners in survivorship care through practice guidelines. She is also the co-chair of the VCH physician diversity, equity and inclusion committee and is currently pursing certification as a DEI practitioner and publishing the experience of women physicians and COVID19 with researchers from SFU.

Dave Williscroft, MD, CCFP(PC/EM), FRCPC, FCFP.

Dave is a Clinical Assistant Professor at UBC in the Department of Emergency Medicine and the Division of Palliative Care. He is a graduate of the St. Paul’s Emergency Medicine Program and completed a Fellowship in Hospice and Palliative Medicine at Stanford University. He currently divides his time between clinical Emergency Medicine at Lions Gate Hospital and at St. Paul’s Hospital where he is one of the Palliative Medicine Physicians. Areas of interest include the interface between Emergency Medicine and Palliative Care, ultrasound utilization for Palliative Physicians, and in international relief work. Dave has trouble keeping up with his growing family of three young kids and a very patient wife.




Early bird registration: Wed. Sep 30, 2020 | Add to calendar +



Sept 30

Nurse Practitioners

 $               100.00



$                 40.00

MID by
Oct 16

Nurse Practitioners

 $               125.00



$                 50.00


Nurse Practitioners

 $               140.00



$               55.00

All fees are in Canadian dollars. Fees are subject to 5% GST.

Fees include access to the live virtual event, all available materials, and the post-event recording.

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