​National Health Ethics Week will be hosted from November 2 to November 8, 2020.


An event that is in rapid expansion, the annual National Health Ethics Week is a time Canadian health institutions, schools and universities, research and clinical ethics committees, healthcare professionals, community organizations, businesses, and members of the general public set aside to host and take part in educational events that explore health ethics that affect Canadians.


The goal of National Health Ethics Week is specifically to:

  • Encourage the planning and organising of events across the country to raise awareness and promote dialogue about healthcare and research ethics issues facing our communities;

  • Facilitate networking between individuals interested in clinical and research ethics;

  • Provide greater visibility for the services offered by the Canadian research and clinical ethics community, including research ethics boards and clinical ethics committees;

  • Offer an opportunity for Canadians to get engaged in discussions that have important policy-making implications in the health arena.


By taking part in the National Health Ethics Week, you are showing a commitment to ethical decision-making and will be helping to open lines of communication with others in your community. We are pleased that you will be joining us for Canada’s next National Health Ethics Week!


How Do I Participate?

All organizations, groups, and individuals who are interested in health ethics are invited to participate. The aim is to get Canadians thinking and talking about a variety of health ethics issues that is of interest or importance to their community – be creative! 


Involvement in National Health Ethics Week is encouraged at a level relevant to and comfortable for you and your organisation/group.


Examples of levels of participation:

  • Advertise the initiative by displaying a National Health Ethics Week poster in your workplace;

  • Distribute print materials;

  • Attend an event in your area or via live streaming;

  • Host a presentation;

  • Facilitate a lunchtime discussion group;

  • Organise a half-day workshop.


You are best able to decide where to focus your energies for maximum benefit to your community.



If you or your organization plans to host events for National Health Ethics Week, then please fill out the registration form. The information will be posted on the CBS regional calendars in order to increase awareness. If your event will be live streamed and is open to the public, please provide the required information to log in.​​































What Resources Are Available?

Upon informing us of their events, participating organizations will receive:

  • Electronic poster template that can be easily printed in order to publicize National Health Ethics Week and your local events;

  • Event publicity, including access to the National Health Ethics Week Event Listing on the Canadian Bioethics Society website;

  • If needed, assistance with locating health ethics and event planning resources.


Here are some additional resources: a trivia game and tips for your NHEW. 


Who Should Participate?

All Canadian organisations/groups with an interest in health and healthcare are encouraged to participate by hosting an activity exploring a health ethics issue. Because of each group's unique association with the health system, everyone will have an important contribution to make and experience to share.


This includes: 

  • Child and family service groups 

  • Churches and religious organisations 

  • Community-based health organisations/groups 

  • Environmental organisations 

  • Healthcare institutions 

  • Health ethics committees  

  • Health professional associations 

  • Health-related businesses and corporations 

  • Members of the public 

  • Mental health agencies 

  • Post-secondary institutions and schools 

  • Regional health authorities and provincial boards 

  • Research ethics boards

  • Social justice groups


For More Information

For more information about National Health Ethics Week, please contact us by emailing canadianbioethicssociety@gmail.com.

2020 Events

Event title: The Ethics of Googling Patients in the Era of Social Media

Speaker: Marnina Norys, PhD

Region & Organization: Ontario/Quebec; Trillium Health Partners

Contact: Dianne Godkin - dianne.godkin@thp.ca

Date & Time: November 2nd, 2020 at 12pm

Event title: Improving Serious Illness Conversations with Hospitalized Patients; Findings and Reflections on a Program of Research

Speaker: John You, MD, MSc, FRCPC

Region & Organization: Ontario/Quebec; Trillium Health Partners

Contact: Dianne Godkin - dianne.godkin@thp.ca

Date & Time: November 4th, 2020 at 12pm

Event title: Health Inequities and COVID-19: Challenges and Opportunities

Speaker: Laura Rosella, PhD, MHSc

Region & Organization: Ontario/Quebec; Trillium Health Partners

Contact: Dianne Godkin - dianne.godkin@thp.ca

Website: https://phesc.zoom.us/j/89065475456

Date & Time: November 6th, 2020 at 12pm


CBS Student Event

For the 2020 National Health Ethics Week, students are bringing national bioethics conversation to a virtual space, for the first time, on Friday November 6th at 2pm EST. This event, entitled Bioethics & Racial Disparities in Healthcare: Student Perspectives, will consist of a panel of three students who will share deliberations and critical reflections on (a) how the field of bioethics can assist with addressing racial disparities in healthcare and (b) where bioethics, as a field, could do better to address this discrimination and inequity.

As such, we would like to announce our call for submissions for the NHEW event. If you would like to apply to be part of the panel and share a 15-20 minute reflection on the aforementioned questions, please complete the form here, which requires that you upload (1) a (maximum) 300 word abstract of what you plan to discuss as a panelist, in relation to the questions above, and (2) a (maximum) 200 word statement regarding why you believe you are a suitable candidate for discussion (for example: have you already thought about these questions? have you conducted research in this area?). In order to participate, you must be a student currently enrolled in a program at a Canadian university or college. Submissions close on October 30th 2020 and successful applicants will be notified thereafter.

If you would like to register to attend the event, please visit the Eventbrite page available here. A link to join the discussion will be circulated to registered attendees closer to the date. Event information will also be updated as panelists are selected and confirmed. 


Importantly, considering the personal nature of these conversations for members of the Black community, Indigenous peoples, and People of Colour, we ask that all interested candidates and interested attendees ensure respect be kept at the forefront of our minds while engaging in these conversations and critical reflections.