James Downar is a Critical Care and Palliative Care physician in Ottawa. He graduated from McGill Medical School and completed residency training in Internal Medicine, Critical Care and Palliative Care at the University of Toronto. He has a Master’s degree in Bioethics from the Joint Centre for Bioethics at the University of Toronto. He is currently the Head of the Division of Palliative Care at the University of Ottawa, and holds a Clinical Research Chair in Palliative and End of Life Care. He is the co-chair of the Pan-Canadian Palliative Care Research Collaborative and the Secretary of the Canadian Critical Care Society. He has authored more than 85 peer-reviewed publications, has been principal investigator on 18 peer-reviewed grants, and is a former Associated Medical Services Phoenix Fellow. His research interests include communication and decision-making for seriously ill patients and their families; Palliative Care for the Critically Ill; and Palliative Care for Noncancer Illnesses.