de Souza Institute provides oncology continuing education to nurses in Malawi

June 20, 2018 |

de Souza Institute offers over 30 online courses covering core competencies in oncology and/or palliative care.  These de Souza courses are standardized and updated annually to reflect the latest clinical practice guidelines. The breadth and range of topics covered by our courses allow health care organizations nationally and internationally to leverage de Souza education and select courses that are most relevant to their organization’s priorities.

This year, seven registered nurses from the East African country of Malawi participated in the Standardized Chemotherapy and Biotherapy course. This course requires 35 hours of active learning including 16 online modules and a half-day in-person workshop for knowledge consolidation. de Souza educator, Ms. Komal Patel led the workshop for Malawi nurses to help them consolidate their learning in administrating and safe-handling of chemotherapy and biotherapy treatments. Moving forward, Ms. Patel will support Malawi nurses with advanced knowledge in chemotherapy and biotherapy to become regional facilitators who will lead local workshops and mentor clinicians in day-to-day practice.

“We have learned a great deal from delivering continuing education to busy clinicians across Canada and will leverage our experiences to bring standardized workforce training in oncology to health care professionals in developing countries. Given the limited resources, online training combined with a local workshop can be a cost effective way to deliver continuing education to clinicians and support high-quality cancer care in many parts of the world” said Komal.

Malawi is the first African country to collaborate with de Souza Institute in continuing medical education. The nurses came from three hospitals: Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Blantyre Adventist Hospital and Mwaiwathu Hospital, where residents of Malawi receive cancer care. We anticipate more clinicians from Malawi in de Souza online learning in the coming years and the Institute will continue to support them through high-quality standardized education.

New Sexual Health Program to Benefit Female Cancer Survivors

June 12, 2018 | ,

Online support group provides resources for sexual functioning and quality of life

Toronto, ON –  de Souza Institute, a national education and research centre specializing in oncology has been selected to receive a $75,000 grant from the Canadian Internet Registration Authority’s (CIRA) Community Investment Program. Through the Cancer Chat Canada platform de Souza Institute will launch an essential online therapist led psychosocial group focusing on improving sexual functioning and quality of life for women with breast, ovarian or other forms of gynaecological cancer.

“Cancer survivors have on-going difficulties related to intimacy, sexual dysfunction and body image distress. Despite evidence of the debilitating nature of these problems, they are mostly unaddressed, in part due to a lack of expertise among healthcare providers and hesitancy among women to raise them”, said Dr. Mary Jane Esplen, Executive Director of de Souza Institute. “Our online support group Re-storing Sensual and Sexual Self (ReSASS) now makes it possible for women across Canada to access expert psychosocial care in the comfort and privacy of their own home.”

“We are pleased to provide a grant to de Souza Institute,” says David Fowler, vice president of marketing and communications at CIRA. “This program, and others we’ve funded, use the vast reach and power of the internet to change lives for the better, something we at CIRA believe in.”

The topic of sexual dysfunction is typically unspoken, highly personal and sensitive.  Moreover, limited specialized services have made it difficult for women to get the support they need. The launch of ReSASS and the generous funding from CIRA’s Community Investment Program greatly enhances access to psychological services for female cancer survivors, especially for those living with disease related disabilities and or those who live in rural and remote areas.

About de Souza Institute

Established in 2008, de Souza Institute is a part of the University Health Network and partners with provincial cancer agencies across Canada. It was originally funded by Ontario’s Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care to provide ongoing educational support, professional development and career counseling to health care professionals caring for cancer patients and families. de Souza Institute is providing cancer care excellence by: delivering innovative continuing education and mentorship programs; helping nurses to achieve national specialty certification; funding graduate scholarships to develop tomorrow’s leaders, and supporting in self-care and career development among health care professionals. To learn more about de Souza Institute visit

About CIRA and the Community Investment Program

CIRA is building a better online Canada through the Community Investment Program by funding charities, not-for-profits and members of the academic community who are making the Internet better for all Canadians. CIRA is best known for our role managing the .CA domain on behalf of all Canadians. While this remains our primary mandate, as a member-based not-for-profit ourselves, we have a much broader goal to strengthen Canada’s Internet. The Community Investment Program is one of our most valuable contributions toward this goal and funds projects in digital literacy, online services, research and infrastructure. Every .CA domain name registered or renewed contributes to this program. To date CIRA has contributed $5.45 million in Community Investment Program grants.

To view the complete list of 2018 grant recipients click here.

Upcoming Developments: Pricing Policy

May 15, 2018 |

Thank you for your continued support and participation in de Souza Institute educational activities. Now in our 10th year, the Institute has offered a comprehensive roster of more than 30 evidence-based, clinically relevant continuing education courses to more than 10,000 front line health care professionals. We are committed to support your efforts, through professional development, in providing the best health care possible in oncology and hospice palliative care to patients and families.

We are making a new round of investments that will ensure that the Institute continues to offer the gold standard of educational materials and provide you, as front line clinicians, a high quality and rewarding learning experience. As a result of this commitment we will be making modest adjustments to our course fees.

Please note: This change does not affect learners from the Alberta Health System taking courses through the O-PREP program.

New course fees will take effect for courses starting July 2018. These new prices are very much in keeping with other agencies offering continuing education courses. All registrations that take place before July 20, 2018 will not be affected by the new pricing policy. We have provided a downloadable table of the updated prices.

There are funding and educational support resources available to nurses. To take advantage of these funding opportunities, please click here.

We thank you for your understanding in this matter and we look forward to continuing to support you, and work closely with you to enhance the quality of care for patients and families.

Feel free to contact us at with your questions or concerns.

– The de Souza Institute Team

CANO/ACIO 2018 Boehringer Ingelheim Oncology Nurse of the Year Award

May 15, 2018 |

CANO/ACIO is pleased to announce that it is currently accepting nominations for the 2018 Boehringer Ingelheim Oncology Nurse of the Year Award! Do you know an outstanding nurse that deserves to be nationally recognized? Someone who: Has consistently demonstrated the highest level of nursing excellence and leadership in oncology nursing Has made a significant contribution to advancing … Read more

A message for National Hospice and Palliative Care Week 2018

May 7, 2018 |

There is an old proverb that says “It takes a village to raise a child” while its exact origins remain unknown we do know that the inspiration behind this proverb is that it takes an entire community to interact with the child and shape their maturation so that they know right from wrong and grow … Read more

#YESThisIsNursing – Nursing Week 2018

May 7, 2018 |

Nowadays very few professions are static. There are so many external factors that are shaping the way we work that professionals are often required to dedicate time solely to keep pace with these changes. Nursing is no exception, whether you work in an urban setting, a remote area or are a community nurse that makes … Read more