Dr. Phillip Cooper discusses how Palliative Care in your own home is an option for end of life care. This conversation looks at effective management of health care for those suffering end of life illnesses.
It is with deep appreciation the Palliative Care Society would like to acknowledge the fundraising efforts of the Kelly family. In memory of Elsie Kelly, who had palliative care services in her home, they have done seven successful annual fundraising campaigns.
Their commitment to our charitable organization in memory of their wife/mother/grandmother is exemplary and truly appreciated. Their fundraising has allowed us to purchase some expensive equipment, relevant supplies and extensive reading for use in the home of individuals tended by our hospital’s Palliative Care Medical Team.
The Palliative Care Society expresses appreciation to all who helped make this day a success. To those who generously donated prizes for the participants – Thank you. The funds raised will support in-home Palliative Care.
First Place Winners: Wayne Richard (Skip), Paulette Tate (2nd), Ronnie Chisholm (Lead), Bill Warner (Mate)
Second Place Winners: Claude Glenn, Stephen Doiron, Susan Doiron, Savannah Rhyno
We would like to thank The Casket for covering the story about Palliative care more than just end-of-life option on March 25th, 2019.
Antigonish Town and County Palliative Care Society members John R. MacDougall (left), Joyce VanBerkel, Anne Marie Long, Larry Starzomski, holding a book donated by Anne Camozzi that she created to support comfort and provide distraction from pain and suffering, outside the St. Martha’s Regional Hospital palliative care unit. The society has been at the forefront of its establishment. Members Dr. Philip Cooper, Marie Nickerson, Kaye Marie Chisholm, Chuck Boyd, Sharon MacInnis, Garry Fiddler, Carla Bond and Diane MacKinnon were unavailable for the photo. Contributed – Corey LeBlanc
“Although it has only been operating for less than one year, the St. Martha’s Regional Hospital’s palliative care unit has touched countless lives.
“It has made a huge difference in so many ways,” Dr. Phillip Cooper, one of the palliative care physicians in the region, said.
He added in the hospital “we have always provided care in less than ideal conditions,” noting it had taken place, with little or no privacy, in four-bed wards.”
Staying at Home
The opening of the new unit does not mean an end to offering palliative care at home.
“It is wonderful (the unit), but it is not for everyone,” Cooper said, noting most patients opt to receive their care at home.
Palliative care team members work with the family to develop a support and care plan for them.
If there is special equipment required to carry out that ‘stay-at-home’ plan., the Antigonish Town and County Palliative Care Society is there to help, including providing home supports, education, comfort and dignity to people have illnesses, their families and caregivers.
The volunteer organization also provides monitor, pill organizers, bed pans, bed rails, hospital bed-side tables and other equipment to patients who may not be able to afford it.
“We are so pleased to be able to support this work”, society member John R. MacDougall said.
He noted providing equipment is just one of the many focuses for the society.
“If providing funding to purchase the necessary equipment or supports allow someone to stay at home, if they choose, or stay home a little longer before they must go to the new unit, is an incredible gift,” he added.
CONSTRUCTION TO BEGIN ON A NEW PALLIATIVE CARE UNIT AT ST MARTHA’S REGIONAL HOSPITAL
Nova Scotia Health Authority has approved the establishment of a new palliative care inpatient unit at St Martha’s Regional Hospital in Antigonish. Tate Construction has been awarded the contract and renovations to create the new unit will begin in January, 2018.
“This unit will fulfill a need and is supported by the community,” said St Martha’s Regional Hospital site lead Martha Cooper. “It embodies the Nova Scotia Health Authority philosophy that health care is person- and family-centred, not system-centered.”
The creation of the unit is made possible through strong community partnerships and generosity. St Martha’s Regional Hospital Foundation has committed up to $600,000 to fund capital costs, while St Martha’s Regional Hospital Auxiliary will contribute up to $150,000 for furnishings and equipment.
“Upon request from NSHA, the Foundation was unequivocal in its affirmation to fund the palliative care unit from invested dollars contributed by our many generous donors,” said Foundation chair Joe MacDonald. “This is our first capital investment in many years and one that connected well with the positive advocacy of the Antigonish Town and County Palliative Care Society. We continue to actively fundraise and encourage all who have not been able to make their pledge to do so.”
The renovation will create a six-bed, dedicated palliative care unit. In addition to the necessary staff space requirements, the new unit will incorporate space for families and volunteers.
“Members of St. Martha’s Regional Hospital Auxiliary are pleased to announce that they will be providing the funds to furnish and equip the new palliative care unit,” said Auxiliary President Anne Brunelle. “The $150,000 required for this purpose will be raised through the efforts of Auxiliary members and other volunteers who operate the Breakaway Cafe, Gift Corner, Jingle Bell Frolic and Mayfest. We are delighted to support this much-needed unit in this way.”
Palliative care provides physical, emotional and spiritual care with a focus to living fully in comfort and with dignity. Through a caregiving team of family, friends, healthcare professionals and volunteers, needs and choices are sensitively met. Palliative care can be provided in any care setting – at home, in hospital or in a nursing home.
“It is with a great deal of satisfaction that the Antigonish Town and County Palliative Care Society welcomes the news that St Martha’s is providing a unit dedicated to the needs of palliative care patients,” said Society board member and former chairperson John MacDougall. “Having participated in and advocated for the development of this unit over the years makes this announcement particularly rewarding for the Society members.”
The new unit is expected to open in 2018.
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The Antigonish Town and County Palliative Care Society recently presented an air mattress, cool mist humidifiers, dark towels, bed soaker pads and an oxygen concentrator to the palliative care team at St. Martha’s Regional Hospital. The society is able to purchase the equipment and provide other services to the clients that request home care through the generosity of memorial donations and events such as the Elsie Kelly Memorial Snowmobile Rally. Palliative care team physicians Dr. Mike MacKenzie (front, left) and Dr. Maureen Allen, society chair John R. MacDougall, society treasurer Anne Marie Long (back, left) social worker Barbara de Marsh, RN-nurse consultant Trish MacKay, RN-nurse consultant Frances Chisholm and nurse manager Charlene Porter gathered for the presentation. Dr. Philip Cooper was unavailable for the photo. Photo submitted
It’s Official! Pictured at the ribbon cutting today for the new Palliative Care Unit at St. Martha’s: NSHA CEO Janet Knox; Minister of Health Randy Delorey; Antigonish Town & County Palliative Care Society Chair Marie Nikerson; Joe MacDonald, Chair St. Martha’s Hospital Foundation; Nancy Mac Eachern Chair St. Martha’s Hospital Auxiliary; Carla Bond Palliative Care Patient Manager and Martha Cooper Site Lead St. Martha’s Hospital.
The Foundation would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our wonderful donors and supporters who helped us, along with St. Martha’s Auxiliary, and the Antigonish Town and County Palliative Care Society help this vision become a reality.
Hope you get a chance to see an “Eagle Soaring”. This large painting of mine was donated to the Antigonish #Palliative Care Society and is currently hanging somewhere in #StMarthas #Hospital with the hopes that someday it will be in a dedicated #hospice space.
Art can provide so much comfort as people journey through life’s hardships and goodbyes and I believe it belongs in hospitals and hospices. #Eagles are a favourite bird of mine to watch.They are amazing majestic parents, flyers and swimmers. We are blessed to have so many nesting in our area.