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Society encouraged by parliamentary committee's support of palliative care

25 February 2016

Toronto -

The Canadian Cancer Society responded today to the report tabled by the Special Joint Committee on Physician-Assisted Dying. 

As Canada’s largest national health charity, the Society thanks all committee members for their hard work and thoughtfulness, and for the opportunity to contribute by presenting to the Special Joint Committee on Physician Assisted Dying on behalf of cancer patients and their families. 

“Parliamentarians of all political stripes have recognized the urgent need to improve palliative care services,” says Gabriel Miller, Director, Public Issues. The Society strongly supports the committee’s recommendations for federal, provincial and territorial governments to develop a pan-Canadian palliative care strategy with dedicated funding, and to ensure culturally appropriate care is available to indigenous patients. The Society also agrees with those who say that our governments can and must do even more than this.

Together, all levels of government must fix outdated and costly health systems that are failing to effectively and efficiently meet the needs of critically ill Canadians with respect and dignity. For its part, the federal government must recognize and protect the right of all Canadians to affordable, high-quality palliative care as it negotiates a new national health accord and crafts its response to the Supreme Court’s Carter v. Canada decision. 

“Today’s report represents an important step toward improved palliative care and the Society looks forward to working with the federal government to build on these recommendations,” says Miller.

The Canadian Cancer Society is a national, community-based organization of volunteers whose mission is to eradicate cancer and enhance the quality of life of people living with cancer. Thanks to our donors and volunteers, the Society has the most impact, against the most cancers, in the most communities in Canada. For more information, visit cancer.ca or call our toll-free bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1-888-939-3333 (TTY 1-866-786-3934). 

For more information, please contact:

Rosie Hales

Communications Specialist

Canadian Cancer Society

National office

Phone: 416 934-5338