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A compassionate Ottawa supports and empowers individuals, their families and their communities throughout life to live well and to die and grieve well.

Banner hanging at Orleans United Church Written by Colleen Mayo-Pankhurst In early 2020, a new term entered the international lexicon: COVID-19. By March 15, many public spaces in Ontario, including places of worship and schools, were ordered to close and residents were asked to do something called “social distancing”. There was a run on toilet…

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By Zi-Ann Lum “OTTAWA — In the thick of the pandemic, Dr. Paul Hacker drafted a palliative care plan to manage a patient’s physical and emotional pain that his grandchildren were going to forget about him after he was gone. The man was dying from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis — more commonly known as ALS or ‘Lou…

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Photo by Gabriela Bhaskar for The New York Times. Article by Joseph Goldstein and Benjamin Weiser “The elderly coronavirus patient arrived at the Manhattan hospital extremely sick and rapidly deteriorating. Dr. Marissa Nadeau, an emergency medicine physician on the night shift, had little time to ascertain his wishes. “The patient, gasping for breath but alert, made it clear he…

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Written by Colleen Mayo-Pankhurst and Hayley Miloff Nothing is the same; yet the important things remain. Now that we have all caught our breath and are beginning to adjust to a ‘new normal’, the HELP Ottawa team wants to reassure you that we are proceeding with the compassionate community research project having made all of…

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Photo by CHRIS YOUNG/THE CANADIAN PRESS. Article by Wency Leung. “As the death toll of the coronavirus pandemic mounts, some doctors are encouraging Canadians to plan for serious illness and possible death now, rather than leaving family and medical staff to make those difficult decisions once they become ill. “Having discussions around serious illness and…

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