A mixed method policy research study of dying at home (Dying at Home)


Please visit the study website to read more about our research.

Study description

Understanding the complexity of preferences for place of death and family involvement in end of life (EOL) care is especially urgent following decades of changes in Canadian health and social policies, funding and service delivery, which have increased structural pressures towards aging and dying in place.

Research objective

The purpose of this mixed methods study is to examine and compare public attitudes and policy on dying at home and responsibility for supporting home death. Our overall inquiry, as well as our methodological approach, is grounded in a critical theoretical orientation that attends to potential inequities and to the historical, social, political, and economic context of home care, palliative care and family care work in Canada.

  • Objective 1 is to examine Canadians’ attitudes about home death and responsibility for EOL care at home, and identify correlates of variation.
  • Objective 2 is to explore social meanings of dying at home and care responsibility within diverse and/or marginalized subgroups.
  • Objective 3 is to explore implicit and explicit expectations regarding responsibility for supporting home death within policy documents.
  • Objective 4 is to integrate these forms of knowledge to assess differences and similarities in public attitudes, subgroup meanings, and expectations embedded within policy texts, and explore how policies can generate inequities.

Our findings will contribute to academic scholarship on social attitudes of home death and family care responsibility, and about how and whether public policies in this area reflect or diverge from public opinion. More broadly, the findings will stimulate wider public debate about these often-hidden issues, to develop policy approaches that reflect attitudinal complexity and avoid exacerbating inequities.


This research is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (UManitoba File #435-2018-0257).


  • Laura Funk (PI, UManitoba)
  • Kelli Stajduhar (Co-I, UVic)
  • Andrea Rounce (Co-I, UManitoba)
  • Corey S. MacKenzie (Co-I, UManitoba)
  • S. Robin Cohen (Co-I, McGill)
  • Marian Krawczyk (Collaborator, UGlasgow)
  • Erin Scott (Project staff, UManitoba)
  • Maria Cherba (Project staff, UMontréal)
  • Laura Ceccarelli (Project staff, UManitoba)
  • Carren Dujela (Project staff, UVic)