de Souza Institute de Souza Institute
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Sexual Health in Cancer (IPODE) (IPOD02SEP24)

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Lisa Roelfsema

The purpose of this 8-week course is to assist health professionals in cancer care to integrate human sexuality in their thinking and practice. Sexual concerns are one of the most common problems encountered in cancer care settings; yet they are the least likely to be discussed unless asked. The framework of this course encourages course participants to:

  1. Address their own, and society’s, attitudes and biases towards sexuality and sexual health;

  2. Increase knowledge regarding functional and dysfunctional aspects of human sexuality; and

  3. Develop knowledge and skill with regard to assessment and educational interventions for common sexual health issues in cancer care. Attention to issues of diversity will be integrated throughout.

Course Syllabus


  • Explore personal beliefs, attitudes and biases that facilitate, or create barriers to, sexual health care in cancer.

  • Understand normal sexual function across the lifespan, including anatomy, physiology, psychology and social/relational aspects of sexuality.

  • Discuss the impact of cancer and treatment on sexuality and sexual function.

  • Describe an integrated model of sexual health care and possibilities for integrating the model in clinical cancer settings.

  • Discuss the role of your own discipline, as well as the role of the interprofessional team in addressing sexual health problems.

  • Develop skill in using the first 2 levels of the PLISSIT Model.

  • Demonstrate understanding of the 3-4 levels of the PLISSIT Model.

  • Develop comfort in discussing sexual concerns with people from a variety of backgrounds.



The main mechanisms to facilitate learning in this course will entail eLearning and seven 1.0 hour "Live" sessions with a faculty facilitator once each week using real time conference session using Contact North (“Live Classroom”) starting on Tuesday, September 17, 2024 - 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time (Toronto, Canada time)  Live sessions are mandatory for this course. We realize that being available for all the live classroom sessions may be difficult due to unforeseen circumstances, so we allow up to 2 missed sessions.  The live sessions are recorded for you to review at any time after the session.

  • Monday, September 9, 2024 - Access to eLearning

  • Tuesday, September 17, 2024  – 1st live session 

  • Tuesday, September 24, 2024 – 2nd live session

  • Tuesday, October 1, 2024  – 3rd live session

  • Tuesday, October 8, 2024 – 4th live session

  • Tuesday, October 15, 2024 – 5th live session

  • Tuesday, October 22, 2024 – 6th live session

  • Tuesday, October 29, 2024 – 7th and final live session

  • Monday, November 11, 2024 – eLearning closes


Using guided activities and exercises, the small group will have opportunities to develop and practice interprofessional collaboration skills as well as opportunities to learn from, with and about each other.

  • A range of innovative learning resources have been developed specifically for this course, including case study narratives, video-taped interviews, and dramatizations of individual, family and interprofessional situations. Cases will provide opportunities for students to learn about diverse and marginalized communities. Online discussion boards will be maintained to explore course topics.

  • Students are expected to use the online resources to do independent work for the unit.  On line resources include content modules, case studies, interviews, narratives, plays, and other dramatic productions.

  • Students are expected to take responsibility for ensuring that their computer system is configured for the course site. Computers used at your agency will need to be configured by your own IT department due to firewalls and other barriers such as administrator rights. Simple directions are provided in the de Souza Institute tutorials and will also be available on the course site. Please ensure that you look after this before the course video conference session begins. Failure to do so will result in frustration and inconvenience not only for you but also for your group. 

To view the full course syllabus and course timeline, please click HERE


This course is designed for regulated health care professionals in hospitals, cancer centres and the community who provide care to those expe­riencing cancer, including physicians, nurses, psychologists, social workers and others. 

Funding Opportunities: Please click HERE for more details.

Group pricing is available when you have 3 or more courses or participants. Click HERE for more details.


Payment must be received by August 26, 2024. For more information, please visit our Cancellation & No Show Policy.

Participants can pay for this course online with a credit card, or send a cheque to:

de Souza Institute
c/o Toronto General Hospital
200 Elizabeth Street,
RFE 3-440
Toronto, ON   M5G 2C4
Last Day to Register
Aug 26, 2024
Course Starts
Sep 9, 2024
Fee (CAD)
International Fee (CAD)

To enroll in this course:


To purchase multiple courses:

Course Ends
Nov 11, 2024
Last Drop Date
Aug 26, 2024
Learning Hours
de Souza Designation Credits
0.5 credits under Patient Teaching and Coaching

While the course “Interprofessional Psychosocial Oncology: Introduction to Theory and Practice” is not a required pre-requisite it is recommended, particularly for students who have limited background in cancer care.