Equal access to the best care and support

Overcoming postal code discrimination for thoracic cancer patients $3.5M

42 hospitals from Gaspé to Gatineau refer patients with complex thoracic cancers to the MUHC but survival rates are lower for those living outside of Montreal. Why? They don’t have local access to the latest treatments and higher quality of care available in clinical trials run in Montreal.

Trials require weekly scans and checkups to monitor disease progression. For most, it’s too far to travel and too expensive. Local community hospitals aren’t staffed to offer clinical trials to their patients.

Armen Erkat, a Security Guard at the Montreal General Hospital was a stage-3 lung cancer patient, who enrolled in a successful clinical trial led by Dr. Spicer. He is now in remission.

“We see a huge opportunity to enable our network of referring hospitals to participate in these innovative trials to overcome this postal code discrimination, both improving outcomes and advancing scientific discovery.”

Dr. Jonathan Spicer, MD PHD FRCS
Co-Chair, Quebec National Pulmonary Oncology Network Director, RUISSS McGill Thoracic Oncology Network

Optimizing surgical pathways for colorectal and gynecological cancer patients in every Quebec hospital ($1.5M)

“With your support, we are helping every Quebec hospital centre implement the latest and best surgical protocols – first developed here – to improve outcomes for cancer patients across the province.”

Dr. Liane Feldman, Surgeon-in-Chief, MUHC

Enhanced recovery pathways completely optimize the patient journey including before (pre-habilitation to prepare for surgery), during hospitalization and after surgery (rehabilitation for a full recovery). Developed first at the MGH-MUHC, these pathways are now being implemented across the whole province for colorectal and gynecological cancer surgery. Enhanced recovery pathways improve patient outcomes and patient satisfaction while increasing efficiency for the healthcare system.


A new space and a new approach to revolutionize the experience of cancer care ($15M)

Cancer care historically responds reactively to the supportive and palliative care needs of people affected by cancer, intervening later than is optimal for providing the most effective assistance. Building on the legacy of Whole Person Care at McGill, we are re-engineering the system to proactively meet the needs of people affected by cancer and ensure they have access to best-in-class services that improve both their quality of life and their chances of benefiting from cancer therapies.

“We now have a unique opportunity to bring these services together in one, easily-accesible location, to offer seamless care and improve quality of life and patient outcomes.”

Dr. Justin Sanders,
Director, Palliative Care, MUHC Director, COSCC

Virginia Lee, PhD

Cancer’s lost generation: the teens and young adult’s forgotten in the middle.

While overall cancer survival rates have improved, young people fare less well – and their symptoms are often dismissed.

A new cancer program for adolescent and young adult patients ($2M)

“Younger people with cancer face very different challenges and fears: finishing education, establishing careers, fertility-loss and starting a family. Our new program bridges the pediatric and adult missions to offer holistic care – and access to the latest research and clinical trials – to meet their unique needs.”

Virginia Lee, PhD
Cedars CanSupport Director;
Manager of Supportive and Palliative Care
Programs and Services

Geri-Care: Supporting older patients ($2M)

Cancer treatments can be extremely hard on the body, and especially for seniors. Geri-CARE offers individualized exercise, nutrition and supportive therapy programs. These are designed to help senior patients improve their cognitive and physical function, maintain independence and mobility, all while decreasing social isolation.

Equal access to the
best care and support

“Most care services are aimed at standard adult populations. Pediatric and geriatric patients need access to supportive care that takes their specific life-circumstances into account.”

Dr. Armen Aprikian
Chief, MUHC Cancer Care Mission Director, Cedars Cancer Centre

Enabling access to sarcoma trials in Quebec ($3.5M)

“With patients dispersed across the province, no single hospital could enroll enough patients to make a clinical trial viable. Patients had to travel far out-of-province or to the USA. With your support patients can now access trials here in Montreal, enabling us to advance research and grant patients potential avenues to prolonged, healthier lives.”

Dr. Ramy Saleh
Medical Director, Oncology Clinical Trials, RI-MUHC; Staff Medical Oncologist, MUHC

Dr. Robert Turcotte, an orthopedic surgeon, is part of the Orthopedic Oncology team at the MUHC and part of the McGill Sarcoma team.

Sarcomas are a rare, complex and deadly group of cancers that arise in bones and connective tissues. 300 patients receive a diagnosis each year in Quebec. Dr. Ramy Saleh has led the creation of Sarcoma Quebec (SARC-Q), a consortium of 11 hospitals to standardize sarcoma care across the province and consolidate all clinical trials at the MUHC.