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Opportunities for Education for Professionals

Events and workshops

As a professional, how prepared are you to support a family experiencing a pregnancy or infant loss?

The experience of pregnancy or infant loss can be devastating for all involved, and PAIL Network can help you understand the best ways to help families navigate through this difficult time. You can’t take the pain away, but by knowing what to say, what not to say, and what to do can help you provide compassionate, sensitive and skilled care.

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What we offer to care professionals

Due to circumstances surrounding COVID-19, PAIL Network has suspended our in person Compassionate Care Workshops until further notice.  We hope to begin offering online modules for professionals in the coming weeks, and would encourage you to contact us at pailnetwork@sunnybrook.ca with any questions.  Referrals by professionals for patients and families can be made on our website here.

Community of Practice events allow health care professionals to come together to share ideas, triumphs, and struggles surrounding pregnancy and infant loss care.
» View upcoming events

Compassionate Care Workshop is an evidence-based one-day, educational session for professionals who support bereaved parents and families during the loss of their pregnancy or infant.
About Our Compassionate Care Workshop

What is a Compassionate Care Workshop (CCW)?

Our Compassionate Care Workshop is a full day training session (8 hours) for people who provide professional care or services to families who may experience a pregnancy loss or the death of their baby.  The day covers many topics including grief, memory making, cultural safety, what to say/what not to say, pregnancy after loss, and family-centred care. We also aim to have a family panel in which families come and speak of their lived experience of loss.

How many workshops does PAIL Network do each year?

We facilitate 24 workshops/year, all around Ontario.

Who teaches the Compassionate Care Workshop (CCW)?

The CCW is taught by two PAIL Network facilitators.  One facilitator is a professional with experience caring for families who experience a pregnancy or infant loss, and one facilitator is a person with a lived experience of loss.

Who can attend a CCW?

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Network offers FREE Compassionate Care Workshops to health and service professionals who are either employed by a government funded organization or who are members of a licensed, regulated profession in Ontario.

Professionals who provide care, services, or support to families during and after a pregnancy or infant loss are encouraged to attend.  These areas may include:

  • maternal health
  • prenatal, antepartum, delivery suite, and postpartum care
  • neonatal intensive care unit (NICU)
  • emergency room
  • day surgery, operating room, and post-anesthetic care unit (PACU)
  • ultrasound
  • perinatal hospice
  • prenatal education
  • public or community health
  • spiritual care
  • social work
  • family practice
  • obstetrics and gynecology
  • mental health
  • midwifery
  • funeral services
  • EMS
  • police and victim services

What are the learning objectives of the workshop?

  • Identify the unique care needs of families experiencing pregnancy loss, stillbirth and infant loss
  • Summarize adaptable and innovative strategies for implementing person and family-centred supports for this population
  • Describe recent provincial legislation on care of this population and implications for pregnancy and infant loss in Ontario
  • List available resources for families and care providers
  • Apply strategies on ‘Caring for the Caregiver’

What topics do you cover at the workshop?

Topics include:

  • Early and late pregnancy loss, stillbirth, infant death
  • Medical termination of pregnancy
  • Grief, attachment, and communication theories
  • Memory making
  • Family-centred care and supports
  • Existing resources
  • Pregnancy after loss
  • Compassion fatigue and caring for the caregiver
  • Family experiences (family panel or stories)
  • Clinical case scenarios (group discussion)

What is required from the host?

The host will be asked to assist with providing a space for learning which includes:

  • Tables & chairs (theatre-style seating may also work, but tables are easier for small group discussion)
  • AV equipment (computer, projector, projection screen, speakers, microphone if large space)
  • Communication support to promote the workshop (PAIL Network can assist with ‘flyer’ creation)
  • Tissues and water for Family Panel (3-5 people) and tissues for each table
  • Parking passes for Family Panel (3-5 passes)

Is there a cost involved in hosting a CCW?

As we are a provincially-funded program though the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, the workshop itself is free. PAIL Network takes care of any travel/accommodation needs for our educators, as well as any costs for workshop materials (workbooks, etc.). Potential costs for the hosts include:

  • Paying staff to attend
  • Catering (if desired, many hosts choose not to provide catering)
  • Room rental/equipment rental (AV equipment, as PAIL Network will bring the presentation on a USB, tables/chairs etc.)
  • Parking passes for Family Panel (3-5 passes)

How many people can attend?

The minimum amount required to be registered for the CCW to move forward is 30 while the maximum is 60 for those attending.  If you are interested in hosting a CCW and are from a community where getting 30 registrants may be challenging, please get in touch and we will be happy to discuss this with you.

Can the workshop be recorded for future use or for staff who cannot attend?

Unfortunately, no.  Due to privacy concerns, and to create a space that is safe for conversation and examples, no recording devices are allowed in the workshop room.  The workshop is for those who are present the day of.

How does PAIL Network assist in coordinating the workshop?

If desired, PAIL Network will create a flyer for the host to distribute in advance of the event.  PAIL Network also supports registration (creation of Eventbrite page for the workshop).  PAIL Network will work with you to collect and share registration details leading up the workshop.  These services are free of charge.

Can I handle my own registration?

At this time, PAIL Network handles all registration regarding CCWs.

Is there a certificate that attendees receive?

Yes, attendees will receive a certificate upon completing the  evaluation of the training.  The certificate is emailed to the participant.

Is there a way to provide feedback after the training is complete?

Yes, attendees are sent an online survey after the workshop is over.

I’d like to host a workshop. Who should I contact?

Please e-mail our Special Projects Coordinator at pailnetwork@sunnybrook.ca.

How can I attend a workshop?

Our workshops usually take place at a hospital or organization that acts as a “host” for the workshop. Generally a host prefers to have their staff register first, and then they’ll let us know if they have space for other community professionals to attend.  If the host has open registration, or opens up to the broader professional community after their own staff register, the workshops will be listed on our events page.  Please check back, as we update the workshops throughout the year.

Where can I see a list of upcoming workshops?

For a list of upcoming workshops, please visit our events page. This page is updated regularly.  Please note that often, workshops are not opened by the host organization to the broader professional community, so not all workshops will be listed here.

I have a question.  Who should I contact?

Please e-mail our Special Projects Coordinator at pailnetwork@sunnybrook.ca.