WATERLOO, ON, April 22, 2002 – Clarica announced today it has
provided $477,000 to help Canada optimize its rate of organ donation from non-living
donors. The money will fund innovative projects at 11 hospitals across Canada that will
share or extend knowledge about quality end-of-life care that preserves the possibility
for organ donation.
Bob Astley, Clarica’s President and Chief Executive
Officer, said “We hope the projects will move Canada closer to a health care system
that integrates organ donation seamlessly as a standard part of quality care”.
Clarica has supported the cause of organ donation since
1992. For the 2001 funding year, the company invited an advisory panel of health care
professionals experienced in organ and tissue donation to define the types of proposals
Clarica should consider and ultimately fund. Once hospitals had submitted their proposals,
the advisory panel, which included experts from across Canada and Clarica staff and sales
force representatives, identified projects based on their potential to have the greatest
impact in hospitals across Canada.
Liz Anne Gillham-Eisen, a member of Clarica’s organ
donation advisory panel and the Senior Policy Advisor on Organ and Tissue Donation for
Health Canada said, “Until now there has not been support to focus on specific organ
donation issues within critical care at a national level. I believe these projects will
help all provinces and territories as they grapple with the tough challenges of providing
optimum end-of-life care for potential donors and their families.”
Researchers at St. Michael’s Hospital in
Toronto will lead the largest project — a real time chart review of all in-hospital
deaths in four hospitals to determine the extent to which potential organ donors have not
been identified. Physicians from Vancouver Hospital, Calgary Health Region and Queen
Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre in Halifax have been invited to conduct parallel
studies in their facilities. The researchers will document the situation that led to any
potential organ donors being overlooked. This data will help to determine what specific
changes each hospital may need to make to ensure every potential donor is identified as a
standard part of quality end-of- life care for patients and their families. If the study
finds similar patterns in all four hospitals, the information will help healthcare
policymakers determine where to direct resources for improving Canada’s organ donation
Researchers at The Hospital for Sick
Children in Toronto will be working with neonatal and critical care professionals at St.
Justine Hospital in Montreal and University Hospital in Edmonton to collaborate in a study
of how to best facilitate infant organ donation in Canada.
Three projects involve improvements to
hospital organ donation practices. Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre in Halifax
will lead a project that will revise protocol and professional education about organ
donation in all 18 Nova Scotia hospitals. McGill University Health Centre in Montreal will
upgrade their organ donation protocol, education and evaluate the results and the Centre
Hospitalier de Riviere-du-Loup, Quebec will better integrate their organ donation program
into hospital routines.
Le Centre hospitalier universitaire du
Quebec (CHUQ) in Quebec City will develop an innovative tool that uses drama to teach
healthcare professionals about organ donation.
Sunnybrook and Women’s College Health
Sciences Centre in Toronto will conduct a study of perceptions of bereaved families that
have been asked to consider organ donation about the quality of care they and their loved
Clarica will again invite hospitals to submit project
proposals for organ donation grants in July of this year. The criteria and application
process will appear on Clarica’s website when the company is accepting applications.
Clarica (CLI: TSE) has provided insurance
and investment solutions to Canadians for more than 130 years. As well as individual and
group insurance, Clarica also provides a full range of savings and retirement products. In
Canada, Clarica serves approximately 4 million customers through 8,000 staff, agents,
financial planners and group representatives who operate out of 90 offices throughout the
country. In the U.S., Clarica operates from three mid- western locations to serve 225,000 policyholders.