About the Indigenous Cultural Safety Training Modules

Being diagnosed and living with advanced cancer or any illness that will shorten one’s life is difficult for the patient, their family, friends, and members of their community. When culture and traditions are respected, honoured, and enabled, both the person who is ill and their family feel supported and that their needs are heard. Each person experiences illness and death in a unique way, even people from the same culture.

When people working in healthcare lack cultural knowledge about important Indigenous practices or fail to ask what is important to a patient and family, it can impact the quality of care, make the experience more difficult and make grief more complex. Everyone working in healthcare has the opportunity to make a positive difference for Indigenous patients and families, and to improve patient and family-centred care.

Throughout these modules, you will learn from Indigenous Peoples about their values, beliefs, and views about care, develop the ability to identify barriers to culturally safer care, and learn how to address these barriers in your role.

Who developed the modules?

The modules were developed by national and international grief experts in collaboration with Elders and Knowledge Carriers, and those who provide healthcare (see About on LivingMyCulture.ca). We are grateful to, and humbled by, the courageous people who shared their stories for the benefit of others. They compliment existing professional training, counselling or related healthcare services.

How do I use the modules?

The modules are an open resource for you to refer to as you need in your clinical practice. They flow in a logical order, so we suggest you start with module 1 and progress accordingly. You can access the modules as many or as few times as you need: decide what works best for you.

Getting started

Note: If you want to receive a certificate of completion, be sure to create an account and log in before working through the modules.

  • To create an account, select "Login" in the top navigation.
  • Select "Create a new account" under "Is this your first time here?"
  • Compete the new account form and select "Create my new account."
  • You will receive an email to your registered email address with a link to verify your account. Check your junk/spam email folder for the registration confirmation email.
  • After verifying your account, continue to the home page to start module 1.
  • When you are logged into your account, you will see "My Dashboard" in the top navigation rather than the menu option to login.
  • You may access the modules without creating a count (by using guess access from the login screen), however your progress will not be recorded or count towards a certificate of completion.
  • To optimize understanding, we suggest that you work through the sections from start to finish.
  • Use the arrows at the bottom of the page to scroll through the module.
  • Navigate among pages using the list of modules, chapters and topics on the left hand side.
  • You can stop at any time and your place in the course will be saved.
  • To view your progress on any module or to verify you have completed a module, visit "My Dashboard."
  • Email info@virtualhospice.ca for support if needed.


  • Click on the > button to start.
  • Select "insert image" to view the video on full screen.
  • Click the red button or the X to close the video.

Interactive features

Some of the pages have interactive features, including content sliders, flip boxes, accordions, and pop-up boxes that will provide more in-depth information.

To receive a certificate of completion for continuing education credits

  • Create an account. Always log in to your registered account. If you review modules without logging in, your progress will not be recorded.
  • Complete each module by viewing all module pages and completing the module quiz.
  • The system will automatically create a certificate of completion for each module, which will be emailed to you. Please save it for your records.
  • If you completed a module, but did not receive a certificate of completion, check your spam/junk email folder.
  • Email info@virtualhospice.ca for further support if needed.

Please refer to your local professional accrediting body for more information on continuing education eligibility and how to submit your proof of completion.

A note about language

For content flow, the term "patient" is used throughout to refer to the person who is seriously ill or dying. The term "family" encompasses all those in the patient’s care network or who may be impacted by their illness or death. It is a fundamental tenet of quality palliative care that people working in healthcare see the patient as a person first and foremost.

Throughout the modules you will notice use of the terms "Indigenous" and "Aboriginal." The correct term is "Indigenous," and it is used unless content refers to material that is subject to copyright or comes from an original source that uses the term "Aboriginal."

Is there a charge to access the modules?

There is no charge for Canadians to access the modules or content.

What if I become distressed?

The content may evoke uncomfortable or strong emotions. If this happens, you may wish to stop viewing the module and attend to yourself (you can return to the content later). You may want to contact a trusted colleague or friend or a supportive counsellor. You can also connect with a health professional by selecting our Ask a Professional feature to pose a confidential question. A member of the Canadian Virtual Hospice interdisciplinary clinical team will respond within three business days (not including Canadian statutory holidays).

What is the survey at the end of the sections?

Your feedback helps us to improve our content. The survey at the end of each section has a few questions and takes about two minutes to complete. Your response tells us what is working well and what needs to be improved. It will guide upgrades and informs our funders about the impact of their investment.

Can I use my cellphone or tablet?

The modules are compatible with all platforms. You can scroll through it using cellphones, tablets, personal computers and all browsers.

What if I have questions?

If you have questions regarding the content, you can use our Ask a Professional feature. A member of the Canadian Virtual Hospice team will respond within three business days (not including Canadian statutory holidays).

What if I have technical problems?

While we have made every effort to ensure a positive user experience, we know that technical difficulties can occur. If you have trouble logging in, or with any of the content, please contact info@virtualhospice.ca. There is no charge for technical support.

Disclaimer and Privacy

This information is not meant to replace professional services. Individuals who use this content do so by their own choice. While care has been taken to ensure that this course reflects the state of general knowledge and expert consensus about end-of-life and grief at the date of publication, Canadian Virtual Hospice does not make any warranty or guarantee in respect to any of the contents or information nor accept responsibility or liability whatsoever for any errors or omissions, regardless of whether those errors or omissions were made negligently or otherwise. For further information, view our Privacy Policy and Legal Notices.