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Hard fight for nurse practitioner Advanced nursing project proves value for seniors with Broadmead Care, but funding remains a struggle

Sex assault trial starts for former priest

Edward Hill Kyle Slavin

News staff

News staff

Ted Semmens isn’t shy about giving Janice Robertson a friendly earful about his meals at Lodge at Broadmead. Breaking into a smile, Robertson listens and asks a few probing questions of the 92-year-old Second World War veteran. He’s happy to talk and give a rundown on how he’s been feeling over the past few days. Robertson is the Lodge’s nurse practitioner, a health care job that fits in the grey area between doctor and registered nurse. Within legislated limitations, she can prescribe medications, diagnose symptoms and order blood work – much of the work a doctor would otherwise do. If a Lodge nurse detects that a resident has a sudden change in consciousness or needs urgent care, they call Robinson. “I can respond quite quickly, can be there in five minutes. I think having a nurse practitioner on site does help with timeliness of care,” she said. “I can get started on antibiotics, discuss a course of action with the family and get blood work going. It prevents people from going to emergency.” As useful as the position is, a nurse practitioner at a residential care facility is extremely rare in B.C. and is effectively an experiment that is running out of time. In 2009, publicly funded Broad-

under the Broadmead Care Society, but all have their own busy family practice offices elsewhere in the city. With the team of nurses, Robinson takes on that day-to-day role of monitoring residents, most who have multiple chronic diseases and take multiple medications. “It’s a collaborative role. NPs aren’t replacing doctors, but they are complementary roles,” said Fiona Sudbury, director of care with Broadmead Care.

The first time the Roman Catholic Diocese of Victoria knew of Father Phillip Jacobs, they were also made aware of past allegations against the priest of “inappropriate behaviour” with a young male. Michael Lapierre, a former longtime chancellor and vicar general with the diocese, said in the initial letter they received in 1995 requesting consideration for the then Ohio-based Jacobs to come and work for a Greater Victoria parish, the letter-writer mentioned the accusations. “The letter ... indicated there was an issue regarding Father Jacobs, and that had been looked into and dealt with,” Lapierre said Monday during the first day of Jacobs’ B.C. Supreme Court trial. Jacobs, 62, is charged with sexual assault, two counts of sexual interference of a person under 14 and touching a young person for a sexual purpose. The incidents are alleged to have occurred in Saanich between 1996 and 2001. Despite the allegations from Ohio, the Victoria diocese hired Jacobs in 1995. In 2002 the diocese said it had conducted an assessment on Jacobs and determined he was “no threat in the future.”

PLEASE SEE: Strong competition, Page A10

PLEASE SEE: Ohio, Page A6

Edward Hill/News staff

Nurse practitioner Janice Robinson chats with Lodge at Broadmead resident Edmund “Ted” Semmens, 92, about his general health and wellbeing. A nurse practitioner at a residential care home is rare and has proven its worth, but the publicly funded Broadmead Care Society fears it won’t be able to keep the position next year without a boost in its budget. mead Care managed to pay for a half-time NP position out of its $23 million budget, for a threeyear pilot project. And only that was due to wiggle room afforded from extra funding from Veterans Affairs – about 30 of Broadmead residents are Korean War or Second World War veterans. The centre needs to fundraise another $10,000 to afford the NP position through to next March. After that, it’s not clear what it’s going to do. David Cheperdak, CEO of Broadmead Care Society says once a nurse practitioner is on the team, it’s hard to step back.

“It will be very challenging for us. It’s hard to go back from such a substantial contribution to the quality of care,” he said. “We are caring for people at the end of life, most with dementia. The average stay is 18 months, but for some it’s only three to six months,” Cheperdak said. “That care we provide can be intense. A nurse practitioner we believe is an essential role. “Like most of the health care sector, we are under significant financial pressure.” A dozen core doctors oversee most of the 225 residents at Lodge at Broadmead, which falls

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Saanich News, December 12, 2012  

December 12, 2012 edition of the Saanich News

Saanich News, December 12, 2012  

December 12, 2012 edition of the Saanich News