Facilities that support dying patients come in many forms – but in Parry Sound, our palliative unit is established as a wing in our hospital. Opened in December 2015 with a $27,000 grant from the Rotary Club of Parry Sound our suites include a living room with spectacular 180 degree views, a kitchenette and bedroom suites. The original donation opened 4 bedrooms but demand and further donations pushed our palliative suites to 5 bedrooms. Donations to the Foundation also bought our self-administering pain pumps that ease the journey of our patients.
Located adjacent to our birthing unit, the setting of our palliative suites is unusual but it provides the right solution for our community. Then Nurse Manager of Obstetrics and Palliative Care, Julia Sek recognized the similarity of nursing care needed to serve patients at both the end and beginning of life. For Ms. Sek the positioning embodied the Circle of Life. In locating the two units side-by-side the economic viability of both units was ensured.
The philosophy of our OB/Palliative Unit has touched our families, often beginning the process of healing. Our nurses on the unit have specialized training in palliative care embracing their role with love and understanding for the combined two areas of dedicated care. Many families that come into the Foundation office share with us that “It was comforting to hear the cries of a newborn as we were losing a parent.”
Palliative Living Room
The Foundation of the West Parry Sound Health Centre provides a free parking pass to families with a loved one in care in our rooms and meal tickets to the Health Centre cafeteria ensuring nourishment for family members staying around the clock. Adorning the walls of the hallways of our Palliative Unit are antique maps donated by Nancy Little and a Birch Tree tryptic created by Carling artist Jane Jones.
Smart, critical thinking made sure that families in the Parry Sound area could experience sustainable support in palliative care. Donations to the Foundation of the West Parry Sound Health Centre made the vision of a local palliative unit a reality. Thank you.