eHealth Centre of Excellence

Digital Health Supports for Palliative Care


Digital health tools can assist primary care clinicians, patients and their caregivers with advance care planning and end-of-life supports. Take a closer look at how our supports can facilitate informed and integrated care delivery.


EMR decision support tools Automated Solutions




EMR support

An elderly patient with co-morbidities presents in clinic with a range of symptoms. Their family physician uses our Palliative Care tool, which is integrated directly in the physician’s EMR. This tool assists the physician in earlier identification of patients nearing the end of life who could benefit from a palliative approach to care. 




Patient goal planning and local referrals to hospice services, Home and Community Care resources and  community supports are some of the resources available within the tool, along with many others.


Key features include:


Prompting the clincian with the surprise question: “Would you be surprised if the patient were to die  within the next year?”


Surprise question feature

Providing decision support in assessing the palliative needs of the patient based on current best practices


Palliative criteria

Providing the clinician with the appropriate resources available, depending on the patient’s current Palliative Performance Scale (PPS) phase


Palliative Performance Scale feature




Palliative icon The Subsitute Decision Maker (SDM) tool is another one of our EMR supports that uses a structured approach to assist primary care clinicians with initiating Advance Care Planning (ACP) conversations with their patients and efficiently collecting SDM information in a standardized way.





Here's what primary care clinicians using the decision support tools have to say:


Palliative Care toolkit testimonial SDM tool testimonial





Automated Solutions

Automated solutions can support primary care clinicians by enabling them to more efficiently and proactively use the patient data in their EMRs to deliver proactive care to patients entering into the palliative stage


Our bots can:

  • standardize and search for certain codes in the EMR that can help to identify these patients quickly
  • facilitate the seamless and secure sharing of patient information across the care spectrum

With little to no added effort for primary care providers and their staff!



Cody bot Our Cody bot can support primary care clinicians to quickly pull a list of patients who may require end-of-life care, and they can then use the palliative care EMR decision support tool to further assist the patient as needed. 


Sharon bot If the palliative patient requires care from the Home and Community Care sector, our Sharon bot can quickly and securely share the patient's Coordinated Care Plan (CCP) directly from the primary care clinician's EMR.


The diagram below depicts how Cody and Sharon work in tandem to support connected care across the health continuum.


Cody and Sharon workflow




We deliver a number of digital health tools that can support wrap-around palliative care, such as  eReferral (as part of the Ontario eServices Program).






Ontario eServices Program:


eReferral can facilitate the quick and seamless sending of referrals to both speciality care and supports within the community for the palliative patient and their caregivers (i.e., respite services).


Patients are able to opt into receiving referral status updates via email, as well as additional information once their appointment has been booked. This feature can reduce stress for patients and caregivers during what can be a very challenging time. 









Click here to get started!