Fall Conference 2018

Putting Care into Mental Health Care
November 2, 2018

Location: Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, 209 Victoria Street, Toronto, Room 240, 241

The contemporary environment of mental healthcare is replete with medical, legal, and social complexities affecting both patients and practitioners. The Centre for Clinical Ethics’ 2018 annual conference will take a close look at these complexities and the relationships between them. Our sessions will confront real-world issues in mental health and wellness relevant to patients, families and healthcare providers, including trauma, patients’ rights under the law, stigma and discrimination, psychiatric care in community settings, and mindfulness.


8:00 a.m.Registration and Refreshments
8:45 a.m.Welcome and Opening Remarks
9:00 a.m.Understanding Trauma-Competent Care: Principles and Practice
Anne Wagner, PhD, CPsych
10:00 a.m.Break
10:15 a.m.Healthy workplace: The impact of stigma on people working in health care
Susan Mercer MSW, RSW
11:15 a.m.Break
11:30 a.m.The Problem with “Community”
Kevin Reel BSc(OT), MSc, OT Reg. (Ont.)
Lucy Costa
12:30 p.m.Lunch
1:30 p.m.Challenging Issues in Mental Health: A legal perspective on 11 of the challenging questions, myths and common issues that can impact patient care
Katharine Byrick BA(Hon), LLB
Barbara Walker-Renshaw BA, MA, LLB
2:30 p.m.Break
2:45 p.m.Mindfulness Practice for a Healthier, Happier Life
Peter Bieling, PhD
3:45 p.m.Closing Remarks


Anne Wagner, PhD, CPsych, is the founder of Remedy, a mental health innovation centre, and an Adjunct Professor at Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario. As a researcher, she is focusing on trauma treatment development, currently integrating the use of MDMA with Cognitive Behavioral Conjoint Therapy and Cognitive Processing Therapy for PTSD.
Understanding Trauma-competent Care: Principles and Practice
Trauma is extremely common, with over 75% of Canadians experiencing a traumatic event in their lifetime. Despite trauma’s ubiquity in human experience, understanding what it is, what it can create, and how to work with it effectively is often unknown or overwhelming for individuals involved in mental health care. The concept of trauma-competent care creates a common starting point of understanding in order to work with clients, patients and peers effectively around trauma. This presentation will describe what trauma is and the outcomes that can occur following traumatic event(s). Principles of trauma-informed care will be introduced, and skills to work with trauma disclosure will be practiced.

Susan Mercer, MSW, RSW, started her career with The Mental Health Commission of Canada in 2012. The focus of her work with MHCC is to develop, support and work with various projects across Canada.
Healthy Workplace: The impact of stigma on people working in health care
Discussion on some of the research that Opening Minds – MHCC is doing in the area of supporting people who work in health care. Susan will discuss some of the programs available and offer some tips for increasing resiliency in the workplace.

Kevin Reel, BSc(OT), MSc, OT Reg. (Ont.), Kevin studied occupational therapy in the past in Toronto. He then worked, lived and studied in the UK for many years, and got his MSc in Medical Ethics. He has worked as a practicing healthcare ethicist in community hospitals, CAMH and presently with the Toronto Central LHIN.
Lucy Costa is Deputy Executive Director of The Empowerment Council, an independent service user rights-based organization in Toronto. She works as a community activist and advocate promoting the rights of mental health service users/survivors as well as encouraging critical analysis about service user inclusion in the mental heatlh sector.
The Problem with “Community”
Community is a ubiquitous term circulating in all domains of mental health and addiction service delivery. We often discuss discharging clients to community, community interventions, community supports, etc. Do conceptualizations of “community” produce what they are meant to do, do they provide relief and reprieve for a whole range of ethical dilemmas and tensions the system aims to resolve? This presentation will explore and take up these questions from the perspective of ethics and service user standpoint.

Katharine Byrick, BA(Hon.), LLB, is a partner in the Health Law Group at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP. Katharine practices exclusively in the area of Health Law, dealing with issues affecting both healthcare professionals and institutions on a daily basis.
Barbara Walker-Renshaw, BA, MA, LLB, is a partner in the Health Law Group at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP. Barbara practices healthcare law generally with a specialty focus on mental health law, including advocacy before the Ontario Review Board, the Consent and Capacity Board, in medical malpractice litigation, Coroner’s inquests and Commissions of Inquiry.
Challenging Issues in Mental Health: a legal perspective on 11 of the challenging questions, myths and common issues that can impact patient care
In preparation for this session, clinical ethicists have developed 11 questions that reflect some of the current challenges faced by clinicians. These questions will be discussed in detail during the session, adding the legal perspective to the clinical and ethical considerations that are involved in patient care. There will be opportunity for discussion of issues not captured in the 11 questions. This is to be an interactive session.

Peter Bieling, PhD, is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences at McMaster University and Interim Vice-President of the Mental Health and Addiction Program at St. Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton, Ontario. Dr. Bieling’s work is concentrated in the area of emerging treatments for mood disorders and quality of mental health services delivery in hospital settings.
Mindfulness Practice for a Healthier, Happier Life
Stress and distress are endemic in our world. Emotional struggles, both large and small are universal experiences. What if there was a method that could help both kinds of problems? Something that would reduce stress, help a person focus on their own strengths and abilities, create happiness, emphasize authenticity, humility and better communication. Something that, at the very same time, helps a person focus, be clear about goals that are important in their work mission, work less distracted and with a greater level of concentration? That would be worth more discussion. The answer may come from an ancient tradition called mindfulness meditation. Mindfulness interventions emphasize building capacity to attend to the present moment in a non-judgmental way. This capacity is thought to be associated with a broad range of benefits, and there are now stacks of high quality evidence that not only can mindfulness help a variety of “presenting problems”, it can create wellness or salutogenesis. The health effects of mindfulness meditation can be dramatic. A growing body of research indicates that mindfulness interventions are an effective way to enhance wellness, mental health and physical health. This talk will offer an introduction to mindfulness for a broad audience, there will be both “chalkboard talk” to help define mindfulness and review its benefits- moving from the obvious argument that mindfulness is beneficial in health care- to the view that if would be of benefit to everyone.

Registration Information

Registration Fee:
(Includes Lunch and Refreshment Breaks)
Regular: early bird rate $150, regular rate $300
CCE Affiliates: early bird rate $75, regular rate $150
Senior/Student: early bird rate $75, regular rate $150

(Centre for Clinical Ethics Affiliates include: Providence Healthcare, St. Joseph’s Health Centre, St. Michael’s Hospital, Pembroke Regional Hospital, Rouge Valley Health System, Runnymede Healthcare Centre, St. Joseph’s Health System Hamilton, Toronto Grace Health Centre, Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care and West Park Healthcare Centre)

A Webcasting option is available – upon request. For further information please contact Lynda Sullivan.

To take advantage of the Early Bird rate please register by Friday, October 26, 2018. After this date the fees will increase as noted above. Registration ends Wednesday, October 31, 2018.

For more information please contact:
Lynda Sullivan, Centre for Clinical Ethics
Telephone: (416) 530-6750
Fax: (416) 530-6621
E-mail: lsullivan@stjoestoronto.ca

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