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Technology and health care for the elderly medical research studies

Focus on strategic priorities that have significant social impact.

CAT 2015-03

Optimizing Palliative Care in Nunavik’s Communities

The proposed project aims to assess the impact of implementing a 24/7 on‐call consultation service offered by southern healthcare professionals who specialize in palliative care and of delivering palliative care training to Nunavik healthcare professionals.

Possible Research Results

Anticipated findingsCare providers of Nunavik will feel more comfortable to keep Inuit end‐of‐life elderly patients in their communities and be able to honor their wish to die among their loved ones, in their community.

Impact of findingsThe knowledge generated by this study has the potential to contribute to improving the supply of services in palliative care in Nunavik’s communities, and thereby maintaining end of life frail elderly Inuit patients in their community. Our work will support new strategies to enhance palliative care capacity in remote areas of Canada. Ultimately, the project aims to guarantee culturally appropriate palliative care expertise on Nunavik territory in order to limit, whenever possible, the transfer of patients outside their communities and to help to improve their quality of life through enhanced care and support in their communities.

About the Project

Most of Inuit frail elderly patients in the advanced or terminal phase of their illness wish to remain in or return to their communities, which represents a major challenge for care providers of Nunavik. Indeed, very few of them are trained in palliative care and are able to manage complex cases. Therefore, care providers are often obliged to transfer them to a southern hospital. These patients are confronted with the stress of being alone, isolated from their families, in a hospital environment where the healthcare culture is different from their own, and where there is a major language barrier.

A specialized consulting service in palliative care and the different training methods will be implemented with local collaborators. Feedback from participants will be reached throughout the delivering process (through post‐questionnaires), and their experience regarding the training program and the consulting service in palliative care will be collected (through individual interviews). The conclusions of the analyses will be discussed as part of a group discussion that will be held on each coast.

For more details on the project rationale, hypothesis, objectives and research plan, click here.

Project Team

Principal Investigator:

Serge Dumont, PhD -- Université Laval


Michèle Aubin, PhD -- Université Laval

Maryse Archambault -- CHU de Québec/Université Laval

Geneviève Auclair -- Inuulitsivik Health Centre

Jean-François Desbiens, PhD -- Université Laval

Jean-Paul Fortin, PhD -- Université Laval

Louis Roy -- CHU de Québec/Université Laval

Knowledge Users and Partners:

Guy Bergeron -- Tulattavik Health Centre

Nathalie Boulanger -- Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services

Saliou Demba Mbaye -- Tulattavik Health Centre

Nicolas Gendron -- Tulattavik Health Centre

Linda Godin-Bradshaw -- Inuulitsivik Health Centre

Justine Grenier -- Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services

Jérémie Guindon -- Inuulitsivik Health Centre

Alice Jodoin -- Inuulitsivik Health Centre 

Maxime Labrecque -- Inuulitsivik Health Centre

Dominic Pelland -- Tulattavik Health Centre

Marie-Claude Pelletier -- Tulattavik Health Centre

Marie-Claude René -- Nunavik Regional Board of Health and Social Services

Project Contact: Dr. Serge Dumont --

CAT 2015-03

Key words: palliative care; end-of-life care; remoted health care; community-based participatory research; health care & services; continuing education; consultant physician; TeleHealth; Inuit; cultural diversity