Resident-centered care?

“‘Two weeks ago, I told my wife, you know, ‘Bonnie, I’m really happy. I feel very happy.’ I’m dying. I have ALS. But, you know, I’m trying to enjoy my life the best I can.'”

A thread worth reading

If your time is limited today and you can only read one Twitter thread, might I suggest this one? You are apt to find it of interest and time well spent.

What’s Really Happening in Hospitals?

Who Am I? The Importance of Spiritual, Cultural and Religious Heritage

When I was growing up, most of my friends went to church services of some kind on a Sunday morning and the afternoons were usually spent at a relative’s or at a cultural event with extended family. I had none of this. My parents were not religious or spiritual, nor did they particularly identify with their Scottish/English heritage. We also didn’t have any extended family in Canada. My connection with them was minimal at best. This left me with a sense of loss, a deep longing to belong somewhere and/or to something and/or someone and a fair amount of jealousy of my friends and what they had.
I did try to fill the void on my own first by joining some of my friends’ church youth groups in my elementary and high school years, and then by attending several different churches as an adult, but nothing seemed to be a proper fit. I often felt like an outsider looking in, no matter what I was involved in when I attended a particular church. I even did a lengthy stint as a practicing Catholic, converting after my marriage, and raising our kids in the Church hoping that it would give them more than what I had growing up.

I now know that I married into a different culture because of my search for identity. Since I did not know who I was or have any strong feelings for my British heritage I thought I could change that when I married my Asian husband. But I did not become aware of this until my bladder cancer diagnosis in 2008. Like many people who hear the words, “You’ve got cancer”, I went completely brain dead and unable to comprehend the situation. When I finally came out of the brain fog, I realized that my life as I knew it was gone. I had no idea who I was and how I got to where I was in my life. I was at ground zero.

I have always said that I felt guided on my cancer journey and after a while I sensed that I would be okay. One part of my journey that was important to my healing process was to look at and into who I was. I started reading about my heritage. Who were the Scottish and the English? I knew of the British royal family and some basic things about England and Scotland but how did this relate to me?

I also started doing my ancestry search and thanks to a free link to through the Calgary Public Library I have been able to put together a fair bit of my family tree. Discovering who my family members were also led me to reading more British history and coming to a better understanding of what was happening in the world at the time that my family members were alive and how that may have influenced and affected them. By understanding them, it helped me understand myself.

That is why I’m glad to learn that in many health care settings, religious, cultural and spiritual practices are now allowed and encouraged as part of a patient’s healing journey. It is important to recognize the body, mind and spiritual connection of ourselves which is often fragmented upon receiving a potentially serious diagnosis like cancer. Just like they say, “It takes a village to raise a child,” the same can be applied to those that are ill. Religious, spiritual, and/or cultural advisors/support people can go a long way in offering support and helping that person hold it together when they are often facing one of the big challenges of their lives.

I did my cancer spiritual journey basically alone but that was what was right for me. After a lengthy time of reading different materials, participating in Wellspring’s Healing Journey program and doing my own ancestry search I would say that most of the void has been filled. I am who I am and for the first time at nearly 65 years of age have come to a place of peace and acceptance and have way more compassion, empathy and understanding for others.

Speaking Out

Here is a Twitter thread that expresses what many people are feeling.

Alberta’s first walk-in health clinic led by pharmacists

Many Albertans are without a family physician. However, Alberta pharmacists may be taking on a key role in helping to address this problem. To find out what is being done, check out this article.

Did You Miss This Article?

If you have not read Dr. Gabriel Fabreau’s opinion piece found in the June 4, 2022, Calgary Herald, you will want to do so. Among other things, Dr. Fabreau provides an honest view of what it is like in Alberta hospitals. According to him, “After two years of COVID-19, our hospitals have never been worse off.”

Take a few minutes to read this important article. It will be time well spent.

Burned out, demoralized and calling for change

“Primary care is the bedrock foundation for our healthcare system and the collapse of this will have after shocks felt at all levels of health care delivery. Having a family physician means promoting preventative medicine, doing outpatient work ups re directing care away from overwhelmed ER departments when appropriate, providing earlier more manageable disease diagnosis, collaborating with specialist and ensuring you get the best care possible. We are instrumental in decreasing the number of in patients and over capacity at the hospital. We help transition patients to short stay units, long term care or follow up on our discharged patients, and some of us even do house calls for the infirm. Good care means taking initiative and ensuring our patients don’t fall through the ever enlarging cracks in the system.”

Click here to read the full article.

Alberta – Rally for Public Health Care!

(Alberta Federation of Labour, 2022)

Saturday, May 14th will see Albertans rallying for public health in the province. Here is where and when the rallys will be taking place.

Where: Alberta Legislature, 10800 97 Ave NW, Edmonton, AB
When: Saturday, May 14, 2022, 1:00 p.m.

Where: South Health Campus – U of C Hospital, Seton Hall off of Front Street, south side main entrance, 4448 Front Street SE Calgary, AB
When: Saturday, May 14, 2022, 1:00 p.m.

Red Deer
Where: City Hall, 4914 48 Ave, Red Deer, AB
When: Saturday, May 14, 2022, 1:00 p.m.

Where: City Hall, 910 4 Ave S, Lethbridge, AB
When: Saturday, May 14, 2022, 12:00 p.m. (Noon)

Medicine Hat
Where: Medicine Hat Regional Hospital, 5th Street Side, 666 5 St SW, Medicine Hat, AB
When: Saturday, May 14, 2022, 11:00 a.m.