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Head, Division of Palliative Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, University of British Columbia; Medical Director, Canuck Place Children’s Hospice; and Medical Director, Palliative Care, BC Children’s Hospital

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Head, Division of Palliative Medicine, Department of Pediatrics,

University of British Columbia;

Medical Director, Canuck Place Children’s Hospice;

and Medical Director, Palliative Care, BC Children’s Hospital.

Vancouver, BC Canada

Regular Full-Time

BC Children's Hospital (BCCH) is an academic health science center dedicated to the care of children, youth and their families and is affiliated with the Faculty of Medicine at TheUniversity of British Columbia(UBC). In 2023, it was ranked fifth in the World’s Best Specialized Hospitals.

BCCH is a program of the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) which plans, manages and evaluates specialty and province-wide health care services across British Columbia. PHSA embodies values that reflect a commitment to excellence. These include: Patients first • Best value • Results matter • Excellence through knowledge • Open to possibilities.

UBC is Canada’s third largest university and consistently ranks among the 40 best universities in the world. Primarily situated in Vancouver, UBC is a research-intensive university and has an economic impact of $4 billion to the provincial economy.

The BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute (BCCHR) is a partnership of UBC and PHSA whose programs include BC Children’s Hospital, Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children and the BC Women’s Hospital and Health Centre. The BCCHR is dedicated to high quality research spanning a broad spectrum of interests in all areas of child and family health. Women’s Health Research Institute (WHRI) at BC Women’s supports research to advance knowledge and care for women, newborns and their families, both locally and globally.

Canuck Place Children’s Hospice is British Columbia and the Yukon’s pediatric palliative care program. More than 870 children living with life-threatening and/or life-limiting illnesses and their families receive Canuck Place inpatient and community-based care. Canuck Place operates 13 patient beds and 8 family suites through two hospices in Vancouver and Abbotsford. Services include in-hospice medical respite and family support, pain and symptom management, a provincial 24-hour clinical care line, music and recreation therapy, education and art, grief, loss, and bereavement counselling, as well as end-of-life care. Canuck Place is the pediatric palliative care consultation team for BC Children’s Hospital and BC Women’s Hospital & Health Centre. And as a provincial resource centre, Canuck Place services also include support for healthcare providers with a mandate for quality improvement, research, knowledge translation and training.

This is a combined role where the successful candidate serves as Academic Head, Division of Palliative Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, UBC; Medical Director, Palliative Care in the Pain360 & Palliative Care program of BC Children’s Hospital; and Medical Director, Canuck Place Children’s Hospice. The position is regular full-time.

The Academic Head oversees a team of 6 physicians all of whom have advanced training in Pediatric Palliative Medicine with Royal College Fellowship or the equivalent, and reports to the Head, Department of Pediatrics. The Head provides support and mentorship to the Division members, as well as being responsible for performance review, contracts and privileging/credentialing. The Division of Pediatric Palliative Medicine has a Royal College accredited Fellowship program with 1 Fellow/year. In addition, the Division works closely with the UBC Faculty of Medicine Inter-Departmental Division of Palliative Medicine in training Fellows from Family Practice, Internal Medicine, and other specialties. Trainees from across Canada and the world pursue residency and fellowships with a strong clinical foundation and the opportunity for clinical translational research. Senior Pediatric residents and Sub-Specialty Fellows (e.g., Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Neonatology) also rotate through the service each month. The successful candidate will report to the Head, Department of Pediatrics, UBC. There are also many post-graduate educational programs that the Division participates in.

As Medical Director in 2 closely collaborating organizations, BC Children’s Hospital and Canuck Place Children’s Hospice, the successful candidate will be responsible for the medical aspects of clinical care delivered to patients in the inpatient, outpatient and community settings. The duties include co-developing policy, overseeing professional practice, and co-leading strategic initiatives. Reporting to the Chief of Pediatrics, the Medical Director works closely with the Clinical Director, Pain360 & Palliative Care. At Canuck Place they will report to the Chief Executive Officer and work closely with the Director, Clinical Care and other members of the Senior Leadership Team.

The successful candidate will be Royal College certified or equivalent, or have comparable qualifications and be eligible to obtain a specialist license to practice in British Columbia. They will be eligible for a faculty appointment in the Department of Pediatrics at UBC, commensurate with qualifications and experience. The successful candidate will support the growing spectrum of specialized clinical services and in collaboration with Child Health BC, will plan these services for children and youth in BC and Yukon. Other important roles will be mentorship of our diverse faculty and trainees and collaboration with allied health and nursing partners, and scientists.


The successful applicant will be prepared to hold a leadership role and have a track record of academic and research excellence improving pediatric palliative care. They should demonstrate excellence in all aspects of pediatric palliative medicine including expertise in pain and other symptom management, as well as highly skilled communication in difficult situations. There should be evidence of highly collaborative work in an inter-disciplinary team. They should also have a strong scholarly interest, whether that is in research, quality improvement, education development or similar endeavors, all supported by publication. The applicant will have a vision for Palliative Medicine and a strategy for maximizing the potential of the Division at a national and international level.

Applications will be reviewed on May 1, 2024 and will be accepted until the position is filled.

Contact 

Qualified candidates should send their CV and the name, title, rank and contact information of 3 referees to:

Co-Chairs: Dr. Derek Human, Clinical Professor and Denise Praill, Chief Executive Officer Canuck Place Children’s Hospice
c/o Kim De Gannes, Executive Assistant
Email: Kimberly.degannes@phsa.ca
Subject line: Division Head Palliative Care Vacancy

BC Children’s Hospital the University of British Columbia and Canuck Place are committed to employment equity and hire on the basis of merit. We recognize that our ability to provide the best care for our diverse patient populations relies on a rich diversity of skills, knowledge, background and experience, and value a safe, inclusive and welcoming environment. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply; however, Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada will be given priority.

As per the current Public Health Order, full vaccination against COVID-19 is a condition of employment with PHSA as of October 26, 2021.

About Provincial Health Services Authority

BC Children’s Hospital (BCCH) provides care for the most seriously ill or injured children and youth from across British Columbia.

BCCH is part of the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA).

The Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) plans, manages and evaluates specialized health services with the BC health authorities to provide equitable and cost-effective health care for people throughout the province. Our values reflect our commitment to excellence and include: Respect people – Be compassionate – Dare to innovate – Cultivate partnerships – Serve with purpose. Learn more about PHSA and our programs: jobs.phsa.ca/programs-and-services

PHSA and BCCH are committed to employment equity, encouraging all qualified individuals to apply. We recognize that our ability to provide the best care for our diverse patient populations relies on a rich diversity of skills, knowledge, background and experience, and value a safe, inclusive and welcoming environment.

Reconciliation is an ongoing process and a shared responsibility for all of us. The BC Governments’ unanimous passage of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act was a significant step forward in this journey—one that all health authorities are expected to support as we work in cooperation with Indigenous Peoples to establish a clear and sustainable path to lasting reconciliation. True reconciliation will take time and ongoing commitment to work with Indigenous Peoples as they move toward self-determination. Guiding these efforts Crown agencies must remain focused on creating opportunities that implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Mandate.

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