Become a Patient Advocate

    Do you reside in the Edmonton area?
    Are you a caring, empathetic, compassionate individual who is looking for a way to make a difference in the lives of others?

If your answer to the above questions is “Yes,” the Open Arms Patient Advocacy society is looking for you. Click here to read more about this exciting opportunity.

Storytelling and Healthcare?


Have you heard about storytelling? Are you interested in learning how storytelling can affect healthcare? If you answered “Yes” to both of these questions and if you are going to be in Edmonton or area on January 29, 2018, here is something you may want to check out.

Out in the Streets

Dr. Jeff Turnbull gets a hug from Shelley, a client, after she gave him a Christmas card, at the Temporary Enhanced Shelter Program at the Shepherds of Good Hope in Ottawa’s Lowertown neighbourhood, Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017. (Photograph by Justin Tang)


Have you heard of Dr. Jeffrey Turnbull? If not, reading the following will give you a sense of who he is and the important work he is doing.

“At 9:30 a.m. on a bitingly cold early-winter morning, Jeffrey Turnbull is preparing to head out on rounds. From a second-floor window in the ramshackle offices of Ottawa Inner City Health, the Peace Tower is visible in the distance, but Turnbull gestures out over the nearer, nondescript rooftops of Lowertown, describing the long-established homeless shelters there—and the new supervised injection clinic—that he’s about to visit.

A few minutes later, he’s parking his SUV outside the Shepherds of Good Hope, a shelter and soup kitchen, leading a small team that includes a mental health nurse into what they just call “the trailer.” It’s a former construction trailer set up recently behind “the Sheps,” fitted out as a cramped but orderly space where drug addicts can inject themselves with health care workers standing by.

Even on this weekday morning, it’s busy. About 130 addicts used the trailer the previous day. Turnbull has a brief meeting with staff there, then strides next door to a clinic for homeless women…” Click here to read the full article from the Macleans.ca.

What is empathy?


The paramedics who were driving a dying woman to the hospital took a detour, and in so doing fulfilled her final wish.

“Sometimes it is not the drugs/training/skills – sometimes all you need is empathy to make a difference!”

Click here to read this heartwarming story.

Family Presence: Ming Ming

The following was submitted by Emma, a member of the Pts4Chg community. Thanks, Emma.

This is Jim. He spent 8 long weeks as an inpatient at the Red Deer Regional Hospital. Thankfully, the unit he was on allowed pet visitors. For Jim, this was patient centered care! Seeing his dog, Ming Ming, brought him such joy and the drive to do what he could to get home to her. Thank you Red Deer Regional Hospital for realizing pets are family too!

Canada Offers A Healing Hand

In the wake of President Trump’s recent travel ban, which prohibits individuals from seven countries from entering the United States, Canada has extended a helping hand. In particular, recognizing that some of these banned individuals are children requiring medical attention, these children may be obtaining the treatment they require in Canada. 

As Eric Hoskins, Ontario’s Health Minister, states:

“Canada is a country that has always looked into ways it could reach out and support vulnerable people around the world.”
(Canada Will Offer Healthcare To Critically Ill Children Affected By Trump’s Muslim Ban)

More than an item for display

With the Olympic games and the quest for medals now complete, the question some people may be asking is:  What do athletes do with the medals they won? While it is true that many individuals are apt to place them in a special case for display, Piotr Malachowski, the Polish discus thrower, did something much different. Click here to read what he did with his silver medal.

Helping Oneself and Others

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In an online post, Sheila, a member of the Pts4Chg community, raises an important topic. How does one obtain assistance for oneself or others when it comes to health care? How does one

tactfully get help for yourself or a loved one, or even possibly someone we don’t know who is in the hospital and we see that he/she is not getting the care that the Dr. prescribed, such as meds being missed or denied, patient not being fed, etc. Sadly, only those who have a loved one who comes to visit, will get these issues fixed, but I have seen (too many times) meals delivered to people without a loved one there to feed them, which were just picked up and taken away when the dietitians came back to collect trays, no one to feed those who are the most sick and alone or help them get the care the Dr. prescribed. In my local hospital, those with visitors get the most care because then there are ‘witnesses’ to what did or did not happen. The ones who are alone are in a dangerously negligent position.

Any comments and suggestions relating to this topic are welcome.

Dementia Care Conference

If you will be in the Lethbridge area on May 27th, here is an event you may be interested in attending.

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Beulah Salt Seniors Conference – Dementia Care
May 27, 2016, 7:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
University of Lethbridge,

Student Union Ballroom A & B
Registration is $10.00 
(Deadline to register is May 13, 2016.)

The sessions include:

Searching for Closeness – Why Feelings Matter Most in Dementia Care
Presenter: Dr. David Sheard, CEO / Founder Dementia Care Matters

Interventions to Change Practice in Long Term Care Facilities
Presenter: Dr. Sienna Caspar, Assistant Professor, Therapeutic Recreation Program, Faculty of Health Sciences, U of L

Moral Distress
Presenter: Dr. Shannon Spenceley, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, U of L

Understanding the Role of the Male Caregiver
Presenter: Mr. Ryan Waldorf, MHSc (Nursing), RN; Instructor, Nursing, Faculty of Health Sciences, U of L

Learning How to be a Butterfly – The Butterfly Household Model of Care
Presenter: Dr. David Sheard

Click here for the Conference Registration Form.

Survey: Pain Patients and Treatment at Hospitals

pain treatment
Over 1250 acute or chronic pain patients participated in an online survey by Pain News Network and the International Pain Foundation that focused on hospital pain care. Based on the results obtained, many pain patients felt that the treatment they received from a hospital was far less than ideal. As one pain patient stated, “It’s so bad that I will not seek treatment in an ER or hospital unless I really feel like my life is in jeopardy. They do not get it, they do not listen, and they do not care.” Another individual wrote, “I refuse to go to ER. It will end up killing me because I know how sick I am, but I would rather die than deal with ignorant, condescending doctors and nurses.” To read more about this study’s findings, click here.