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Dean's Blog

On Vacation

After a long few months, I am on vacation! I am leaving the dean’s office in the capable hands of my Executive Vice Dean, Iain Young, and I’m taking off. Our plans are to chill out and relax in Kingston for a week. Then Cheryl, I and our youngest son Gabe are off to London, England. We are going to attend Gabe’s graduation ceremony from his Master’s degree in political science at the University of Essex. He is planning on attending Queen Mary University of London law school next year, so Cheryl and I will be assisting him in finding a place to live in London.

Physician Assisted Dying

In June the Canadian Medical Association released its preliminary findings on the issue of physician assisted dying.1 The report calls for “creation of a national palliative-care strategy to ensure people across the country have access to a high-quality, dignified end-of-life experience.”2 Recently the Province of Québec passed Bill 52 that affords Québec citizens the right to “die with dignity”. The bill passed in the Québec assembly in June by a vote of 94 to 22.3

You are your bugs

The last few years has seen an explosion of interest in the bugs that live in or on our bodies. It is amazing that the average person has more than a trillion bugs as part of him or her. While medical science has long understood the existence of these bugs, and the symbiosis between man and microbe, it is only recently that the full ramification of this association is being discovered. In a recent article in The Economist, it was said that “a growing band of biologists, … see people not just as individuals, but also as ecosystems”.1

An important talk in Ottawa about mental health

Barbara Crook (Artsci’79) answers questions following her presentation at the second annual Bell Lecture on Mental Health and Anti-Stigma on June 10. Ms. Crook was joined on stage by Queen’s professor Heather Stuart, the Bell Canada Mental Health and Anti-Stigma Research Chair, and Steve Madley, radio host and master of ceremonies for the talk.

Dr. Chris Simpson

(Acting) Dean, Faculty of Health Sciences, Queen's University