New digital health tools tackle tough subjects.

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New French online tools for people who are grieving and young people with advanced illness.

May 21, 2019 – Winnipeg, Manitoba – Young Francophone adults living with advanced illness and Francophones grieving the loss of someone they care about will now have access to two new digital health tools previously available in English only. Unique in the world, these tools were unveiled at the Quebec Palliative Care Association (AQSP) Annual Conference in Montreal by the Canadian Virtual Hospice.

The first one, www.MonDeuil.ca (available in English at MyGrief.ca) assists people to move through their grief “in their own place at their own pace.” Developed by grief experts and people who have experienced a significant loss, the nine interactive modules explore topics such as: how the loss is affecting the family, how to deal with intense emotions and, when and how to access help. This digital health tool also helps those supporting someone who is grieving. It was developed in collaboration with McGill University Palliative Care; Hope & Cope; the Nurses Association of New Brunswick; the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority; and, Health PEI. Funding was provided by Health Canada.

The second one, www.vivreAfond.ca (available in English at LivingOutLoud.Life) was developed by young people living with advanced illness to support others. It features stories by young adults and aims to help other young people living with advanced illness, their family and their friends. It was developed in collaboration with Young Adult Cancer Canada; Hope & Cope; and, Team Shan Breast Cancer Awareness for Young Women. Funding was provided by the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer and the Thomas Sill Foundation.

Founded in 2004 the Canadian Virtual Hospice is a leader in digital health and the most comprehensive online source of information and support about palliative care, caregiving and grief in the world. It reaches more than 1.6 million people a year.

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“People who are grieving and young adults with advanced cancer now have access to new, free tools to support them,” said Shelly Cory, Executive Director of Canadian Virtual Hospice. “Grief is often longer and harder than we expect and there are many barriers to accessing help. Young adults living with an advanced cancer had nowhere to turn for information and support. Now these services can be accessed anytime of the day or night, at no cost.”

“Access to quality palliative care services is essential for all Canadians facing life-threatening and debilitating illnesses,” said Minister of Health, Ginette Petitpas Taylor. “These online tools are an important step in helping improve Canadians’ access to essential services that are supportive and easy-to-use.”

“Next month, the modernized Canadian Strategy for Cancer Control will be released which calls for expanded access to services addressing the unique challenges faced by adolescents and young adults with cancer,” said Cindy Morton, CEO of the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer. “vivreAfond.ca will play a big role in providing an online community for this vulnerable patient group, particularly for French Canadians living in rural and remote areas. The Partnership is pleased to continue our work with Canadian Virtual Hospice to push for better supports and processes that enable smoother transitions to adult cancer care, another priority outlined in the new Strategy.”

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Young adults who participated in the development of vivreAfond.ca, grief experts and people who shared their story of loss on MonDeuil.ca are available for interviews.

Contact for media only:
Marianne Goodwin
goodwinmarianne1@gmail.com
613-799-5597

For further information, please contact:
Marissa Ambalina
Communications Specialist, Canadian Virtual Hospice
marissa@virtualhospice.ca
204-478-1758