A physician, educator and researcher highly regarded as an advocate for change has been awarded the 2018 Elizabeth J. Latimer prize in palliative care.

Samantha Winemaker, an associate clinical professor in the Department of Family Medicine in the division of palliative care at McMaster University's Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine, received the award last week. 

"I am privileged to follow in Dr. Latimer's footsteps," said Winemaker. "I see this award as a message from her to 'stay the course'."

Winemaker is a multiple alumna of McMaster, with her medical degree in 2001 followed by a residency in family medicine and a fellowship in palliative care.

She is currently a palliative care consultant with the Greater Hamilton Palliative Care Outreach Team. She has been a long time promoter of integrated collaborative models of palliative care delivery.  She is most passionate about exposing learners to the unique and challenging aspects of home based care.  

She is also an active educator and researcher focused on examining the interface between primary care and palliative care.  She is also examining the care processes upstream in the illness journey to help illuminate the early care needs of people facing progressive life-limiting illness. 

The Elizabeth J. Latimer prize recognizes excellence and innovation in palliative care. It is named in honour of McMaster's internationally renowned and pioneering palliative care physician and educator.

The award is for a clinician, teacher, researcher or administrator whose work continues to pave the way for continued growth and improvement of end-of-life care in the region.

Mary Catherine Rilett, a nurse clinician with the Niagara West Palliative Care Team, nominated Winemaker for the award. She said Winemaker, a former student of Latimer's, is carrying the torch as a devoted, passionate and persistent champion of palliative care.

"Dr. Winemaker shares Dr. Latimer's commitment to advancing palliative care, labours to create a sustainable system that enables access to palliative care for all our citizens, and supports fellow care providers as they grow their capacity for the palliative approach to care," said Rilett.

"Dr. Winemaker's research initiatives advance the techniques for education of primary care providers, underscoring the principle that 'palliative care is everyone's business'."

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