A fundraising target has been set by the Caloundra Hospital’s Auxiliary to assist the Palliative Care Unit at the Caloundra Hospital by 2018, which provides specialist care to a total of 20 local patients coping with a life threatening illness.
State Member for Caloundra Mark McArdle MP said anyone who has experienced the helplessness of watching a loved one struggle with a life altering condition would appreciate the importance of a palliative care team.
“Palliative care involves more than pain management, it identifies and treats patient symptoms that can be caused from emotional, spiritual and social suffering. As a family centred model of care, the family and carers also receive much needed practical and emotional support to cope throughout all stages.
“Depending on the patient and their needs, palliative care can be delivered in a home, hospital, hospice or a residential age facility. In Caloundra we are extremely fortunate to have an arm of the Caloundra Hospital dedicated to the provision of specialist palliative care. Thanks to fundraising by the Caloundra Hospital Auxiliary, the Unit grew from a two bed facility to ten beds today,” Mr McArdle said.
Caloundra Hospital Auxiliary President Claudine Hagan said their previous achievements had made a significant difference to the overall shortfall of palliative care beds on the Sunshine Coast.
“The Auxiliary is working towards raising a large sum to assist in buying specialty screen printed shower curtains to add colour and a calming scenery, recliners that convert to beds for carers and special window blinds that allow you to see in and out of rooms ensuring privacy while maximizing natural light.
“The money will not be used to purchase palliative care beds, nor in the construction of additional space but to augment the capital and fit-out costs that are to be met by the government. We believe the funding is best used to provide those extras that will make the unit more attractive whilst the government meets their funding requirements.
“It is so important to remove as much of the clinical elements that characterise a normal hospital ward, to help patients feel as comfortable as possible and lessen the psychological impacts of their illness. By making it a warm and inviting place where family and friends can comfortably spend time is also a key ingredient to improving mental health of all involved in the patient’s journey,” Ms Hagan said.
Mr McArdle praised the tenacious hardworking group of volunteers for their determination.
“More than 250 volunteers form the Auxiliary and together run Bardo’s Bazaar and the Mary Rose Café at the Hospital. The Auxiliary has a proud history of service to the hospital community and has raised more than $1.6 million since it began in 1981. Over the years these funds have been shared across the hospital and gone toward the purchase of electronic beds, surgical instruments, medical scanners and training equipment. To have a large lump sum to invest purely in Palliative Care is truly an amazing and life changing gift for Caloundra,” Mr McArdle said.
“Being able to help terminally ill patients see out the final chapter of their lives in a bright and friendly environment with dignity and with love is so rewarding and I invite Caloundra residents to visit Bardo’s Bizarre, explore the treasures and make a purchase and be a part of this history making fundraising challenge,” Ms Hagan said.
Bardo’s Bizarre is located at located on West Terrace, opposite the Caloundra RSL, Monday-Friday 9am-4pm. Phone 5436 8823.
The Mary Rose Café is located at the Hospital Entrance and is open Monday to Friday from 7.30am-3pm.
For further information contact: Office of Mark McArdle, 5329 4100.