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Medical Assistance in Dying for Patients Diagnosed with Brain Cancer: A Global Perspective with Implications for Equitable Access

February 2, 2022 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm EST


  • Jennifer A.H. Bell, Department of Bioethics and Supportive Care Research Division, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, The Institute for Education Research (TIER), University Health Network, Department of Psychiatry and Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto
  • Seth Climans, Department of Medical Oncology and Hematology, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Department of Oncology, Western University
  • Caroline Variath, Lawrence S. Bloomberg School of Nursing, University of Toronto, Faculty of Health Sciences and Wellness, Humber College IATL

About this Seminar:

Medical assistance in dying (MAiD) is currently legal in several locations across the globe. Brain cancer or its treatments can lead to cognitive impairment, which can impact decision-making capacity for MAiD. Using a mixed-methods research paradigm, we sought to explore neuro-oncology clinicians’ attitudes and perspectives on MAiD, including interpretation of decision-making capacity for patient MAiD eligibility. An online survey was distributed to members of national and international neuro-oncology societies and qualitative interviews were conducted with select respondents. There were 125 survey respondents and 24 interview participants. There is disagreement about the scenarios in which patients are eligible for MAiD. Participants described the unique challenges facing brain cancer patients, potentially resulting in their inequitable access to MAiD. The findings highlight the importance of early end-of-life conversations, advance care planning, and access to end-of-life treatment options.

Additional Details:

This event is free and is open to the general public.

The direct link to the seminar will be sent out to registered participants 2 hours before the event. The JCB Bioethics Seminars are now being live-streamed to our YouTube channel. If you don’t receive the link 2 hours before the event, please head over there and click on the live stream. Subscribe to our channel to receive notices of upcoming events.


Please email Laurie Bulchak, laurie.bulchak@utoronto.ca.


February 2, 2022
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm EST
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Joint Centre for Bioethics
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