Improved patient care is at the heart of a project designed to train cancer health professionals to provide cancer education to their peers. Funded by Health Canada, with Cancer Care Nova Scotia as the project lead, Partners for Interprofessional Cancer Education has trained one health professional from South Shore Health as a facilitator. The training provides expertise in interprofessional learning – a greater appreciation of each others’ values, knowledge and abilities; collaborative, patient-centred practice and cultural sensitivity and safety for First Nations communities. This facilitator will educate health professionals in their district. Together with 37 other facilitators from across Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, they will reach more than 1,100 community-based health professionals over the next year. “Canada’s government commends Cancer Care Nova Scotia and itspartners for their leadership in this project. By April 2008, more than 1,000 Nova Scotian health professionals will be better trained to help cancer patients,” said Tony Clement, federal Minister of Health. “The introduction of interprofessional education across Nova Scotia will benefit not only the patients who will receive unprecedented treatment and support, but also the teams of professionals who work in cancer care.” “With the expertise and commitment of districts, and the strength of our other partners, we are extending the value and reach of Cancer Care Nova Scotia’s original interprofessional education program, the interprofessional core curriculum,” said Theresa Marie Underhill, chief operating officer, Cancer Care Nova Scotia. “Through this project, we are enhancing it, extending the training of health professionals and providing the necessary supports for them to deliver the interprofessional core curriculum to others.” “Health-care providers are excited about the opportunity to broaden and enhance their knowledge, skills and understanding through this initiative. We are pleased to be working with our partners to provide education that will positively impact the lives of hundreds of cancer patients in our District,” said South Shore Health’s CEO Kevin McNamara. Health professionals with an expertise in cancer or palliative care were recruited to participate in the training. Medical and radiation oncologists, palliative care physicians and nurses, social workers, pharmacists, nursing students from St. Francis Xavier University and First Nations representatives working in health were among those trained. “Cancer Care Nova Scotia and its partners have produced an extraordinary education resource,” said Dr. David Abriel, physician on South Shore Health’s palliative care team, who was recently trained as an interprofessional facilitator. “In addition, the recent workshops have provided training not only in the presentation of content, but also in facilitating healthprofessionals who are establishing a new patient-centred and morecollaborative model of care.” The Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre, in collaboration with other partners, implemented the first phase of the project, the development of the facilitator training program. First Nations consultants worked with the Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre to ensure cultural safety and sensitivity was woven throughout the training program. The centre also revised the case studies included in Cancer Care Nova Scotia’s interprofessional core curriculum, which facilitators will be delivering. Beginning in April, facilitators will deliver the core curriculumprogram to community based health professionals in Nova Scotia and P.E.I. The curriculum has 10 modules including, pain and symptom management, treatment and side effects. By April 2008, 1,100 health professionals will have a better knowledge in these areas as well as an improved understanding and appreciation of the expertise of their team members and the community resources available to patients and families. The curriculum will also be included in the undergraduate nursing program at St. Francis Xavier University. As part of the project, Cancer Care Nova Scotia will help facilitators develop a community of practice to build interprofessional knowledge and expertise through better interaction. An evaluation, led by Dalhousie Continuing Medical Education, for both facilitators and participants will cover both intended and self reported changes in practice. Possible ways for evaluating the project from the patient perspective are also being discussed. In addition to Cancer Care Nova Scotia, Partners for Interprofessional Cancer Education includes: district health authorities, the IWK Health Centre, the Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre, Dalhousie University Continuing Medical Education, Dalhousie University College of Pharmacy, Division of Continuing Pharmacy Education, the Union of NovaScotia Indians, the Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq, St. Francis Xavier School of Nursing, Seniors’ Secretariat and Prince Edward Island Department of Health. Cancer Care Nova Scotia is a program of the Department of Health,created to reduce the burden of cancer on individuals, families, and the health care system through prevention, screening, education and research.
However, Sampanthan added that the TNA had good reasons for not attending the “Ezhuga Tamizh” rally. (Colombo Gazette) Senathirajah said that Wigneswaran, having been a Supreme Court judge, would not have made a charge of this nature in writing and publicized it, without grounds. The matter deserves to be investigated by the police. However, the Leader of the House and UNP MP, Lakshman Kiriella, said that the matter should not be raised in the House because Wigneswaran had said that he had been misinterpreted and had clarified his position.TNA Chief and Leader of the Opposition R.Sampanthan said that a careful reading of Wigneswaran’s speech at the “Ezhuga Thamizh”(Tamils Arise) rally showed that he had not said anything that the TNA has not been saying. In fact the TNA has been urging the powers-that-be in Colombo to attend to these issues expeditiously.Sampanthan further said that Wigneswaran had clarified his stand ,correcting the misrepresentations in the South. However it is not clear yet, if Sampanthan has take up the matter with the President. He had told DailyFT that the matter is under consideration. Wigneswaran had made the charge in a written speech which was read out at a book release function in Jaffna on October 2.Earlier, Wigneswaran’s recent controversial utterances were raised in parliament by the pro-Mahinda Rajapaksa Joint Opposition group. Dinesh Gunawardene said that by demanding the stoppage of construction of Buddhist temples and settlement of Sinhalese in the Tamil-majority North, Wigneswaran had violated rights enshrined in the constitution. Wimal Weerawansa demanded that the TNA is culpable because Wigneswaran was elected as a TNA candidate. The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) may ask President Maithripala Sirisena to order a police investigation into Northern Province Chief Minister C.V.Wigneswaran’s contention that a plot is being hatched in South Sri Lanka to kill him and blame the LTTE for it, the New Indian Express reported.TNA’s General Secretary Mavai Senathirajah told Express on Wednesday that he has asked party chief R.Sampanthan to take the matter up with the President, and seek enhanced police protection for Wigneswaran.