Annual Report 2017-2018
Pregnancy and Infant Loss (PAIL) Network is a provincial program funded to provide peer-led support to families who experience the loss of a pregnancy or infant and education to health-care providers who care for them.
Established in 1992 by a small group of bereaved parents, PAIL Network became the recognized leader in Ontario for compassionate pregnancy and infant loss support to families and valued training to health-care providers.
In 2015, PAIL Network was instrumental in the passage of Bill 141, the Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness, Research and Care Act. As a result of Bill 141 and PAIL Network’s reputation and hard work, PAIL Network was given a mandate to expand services across Ontario as well as funding to undertake a number of foundational projects including:
- Conducting a provincial needs assessment of existing services and service gaps
- Establishing an Advisory Committee with membership that included families with lived experience of pregnancy and infant loss
- Developing a strategic plan to guide PAIL Network’s expansion over the next three years
Our strategic plan focuses our work in four areas
Jo Watson – Operations Director
► Michelle LaFontaine – Program Manager
► Megan Fockler – Education Coordinator
► Amy Muhr – Volunteer Resource & Support Coordinator
80 PAIL Network Volunteers
► Lynn Davis – Referrals Coordinator
► Suzie O’Regan – Special Projects Coordinator
► Stacey Radford – Administrative Assistant
Awareness and advocacy
We will continue to provide leadership, including in partnership with others, to increase awareness about perinatal loss and bereavement, to address stigma, and to advocate for better services and support.
- Butterfly Release and Family Picnic in Toronto area: over 500 people in attendance
- Butterfly Release and Family Picnic in Southwestern Ontario: over 200 people
- More than 2,000 Pinwheels for PAIL distributed across Ontario
- October 15th: supported the Wave of Light in various communities
- Walk to Remember
- Candlelight Memorial
- PAIL Network has presented at the following conferences:
- Ontario Hospital Association
- Nurses Practitioners Association of Ontario
- Canadian Association of Perinatal and Women’s Health Nurses
Health care provider education
We have increased our focus on education, training, and support to professionals who provide care, services, or support to families experiencing a pregnancy loss, stillbirth, or infant death. We removed the cost of the Compassionate Care Workshop to ensure access to all care providers who may be interested in hosting this one-day learning session in their community. We also awarded quality improvement funds for education in Ontario, resulting in over 16 workshops being delivered in cities across the province.
We will continue to have a primary focus on providing information and educational resources and direct peer support to families who experience perinatal loss and bereavement, and will expand support programs and resources for families who experience pregnancy and infant loss as part of an integrated continuity of care. Providing support in a variety of modalities, including online support, will allow families to more easily access support and in the ways that best meet their needs.
- New support modalities offered to families, with a focus on including fathers and male partners
- PAIL Network will continue to recruit for volunteers in communities all over Ontario to work towards equitable access to support families
- Continue to work as a partner with Health Quality Ontario to develop a Quality Standard for Early Pregnancy Complications and Loss
- Embed evaluation measures into all facets of our work with observable outcomes and key indicators
- Build relationships with leaders in mental health to further develop a theme of resiliency throughout our organization for family support and education
- Develop an awareness campaign targeted to health care professionals, underscoring the need for skilled, compassionate care
- Build a regional structure for PAIL Network to foster equitable access to support