Enhancing the quality of life when the outlook is grim

Dr. Lawrence Rosenberg
Dr. Lawrence Rosenberg

Ever since West-Central Montreal Health came into existence, substantial effort has been devoted to ensuring that healthcare recipients can resume their lives as promptly as possible, with minimal disruption to their families or lifestyle.

Unfortunately, for some individuals whose deteriorating condition can only end in death, that option is simply not available. It is in these tragic circumstances that our network has an ideal opportunity to demonstrate the extent of its commitment to enhancing the experiences of healthcare recipients. Ultimately, the concept of the user experience is about providing comfort and peace of mind—and this can be achieved by anything from a simple act of courtesy to (at the opposite extreme) making the approach of death as tolerable and pain-free as possible.

For this reason, clients in our network are fortunate to benefit from exceptional palliative care services at Mount Sinai Hospitaland the Jewish General Hospital. This expertise was celebratedrecently with the presentation of the Award of Recognitionto Dr. Bernard Lapointe, JGH Chief of Palliative Care, bythe Quebec Association of Palliative Care. Honoured for his“ongoing commitment to the development of palliative care inQuebec,” Dr. Lapointe is widely known for his sensitivity andprofessionalism.

His influence has spread throughout our network, most notablyto Mount Sinai Hospital, many of whose staff have attendedand benefited from Dr. Lapointe’s lectures and presentations.Not only does Mount Sinai offer a comprehensive and compassionateapproach to end-of-life care, it has developed a unique Home Care Program that enables palliative-care patients tomaintain their dignity in the familiar surroundings of home, while effective symptom management is provided by the hospital’s home care team.

When hope for a longer life is all but gone, support remain sever-present in West-Central Montreal Health. What matters most is our commitment to enhancing the quality of life, even when the quantity of life is no more than a few weeks or even days.

Lawrence Rosenberg, M.D., Ph.D
President and CEO