Palliative Care

  • Explain the modern model of palliative care as it applies to those living with life-threatening or life-limiting illness (non-malignant or malignant)
  • Explain to patients/families the concepts of Advance Care Planning, Goals of Care and DNR
  • Identify early signs of the patient entering the last year of life
  • Demonstrate an approach to assessing a patient at end of life including the use of the  Edmonton Symptom Assessment Scale and Palliative Performance Scale
  • Be aware of the challenges when discussing prognosis of chronic diseases
  • Demonstrate basic principles in assessing two common symptoms in palliative care: pain control and dyspnea
  • Address patient’s and families’ views around life sustaining therapies and nutritional care at end of life 
  • Identify local resources to support palliative patients and their families
  • Accurately complete a death certificate


What Is Palliative Care

What Is Palliative Care? Canadian Virtual Hospice. Content Reviewed 2015. Available at:

Who Will Speak for You? Speak Up Ontario. 2016. Available at:

The GSF Prognostic Indicator Guidance

Thomas K: The GSF prognostic indicator guidance. End-of-life Care. 2011. The Gold Standards Framework Centre In End of Life Care. Available at:

ESAS - Edmonton Symptom Assessment System

Regional Palliative Care Program.  Guidelines for using the Edmonton Symptom Assessment System (ESAS). 2001.

Palliative Performance Scale

Victoria Hospice Society. Palliative Performance Scale (PPSv2). Copyright 2001.

Prognosis in Chronic Disease

Kapo JM, Casarett D. Prognosis in Chronic Diseases. Annals of Long-Term Care. 2006; 14(2). Available at:

Palliative Care Clinical Card

Fauteux J, Keegan DA, Braun T. Palliative Care. Canadian Family Medicine Clinical Card. 2010. Available at:

Pharmacologic Pearls for End of Life Care

Clary PL, Lawson P. Pharmacologic pearls for end-of-life care. Am Fam Physician. 2009;79(12):1059-1065.

Symptom Guidelines Dehydration

Hospice Palliative Care Program: Symptom Guidelines: Dehydration. Fraser Health. 2006. Available at:

Government of Canada - Health Canada

Palliative Care Publications. Government of Canada – Health Canada. 2016. Available at

Improving the accuracy of death certification

Myers KA, Farquhar DR. Improving the accuracy of death certification. CMAJ: Canadian Medical Association Journal. 1998;158(10):1317-1323.