A Place for Peace The new Weinstein Inpatient Hospice and Palliative Care Center, expected to open in 2014, will help patients and their families cope with death by experiencing it as a natural closure that, when done properly, can bring an unexpected comfort to those left behind. Recently, several donors have come on board to see to the completion of the proposed 11-bed unit, which will be located within the medical center. Virginia Moriarty, who has given a generous donation, Renderings of the center’s patient room and family lounge
believes that caregivers who are trained in helping patients die are an important part of medical care: “The time before death should be filled with positive memories for the family.” At the request of Nancy and Bob Boye, the Boye Foundation, Inc., has also donated toward palliative care. “Our daughter died in the hospital,” says Mr. Boye. “We are certainly in favor of improvements in this area so that everyone has the ability to die with dignity.” Monies were also raised by the Township Twig who hosted Mary Lou Quinlan in a benefit performance adapted from
her book The God Box, which describes the impact of her
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Guiding Lights Advances in health care have saved millions of lives over the last few decades. However, with more treatment options come more decisions, shifting a patient’s focus from getting well to navigating a confusing array of choices and actions. Enter patient-navigation services whose mission is to guide patients and their families through an increasingly complex medical system. Navigators help patients receive prompt care by assisting with such tasks as the coordination of doctor’s appointments, the filing of insurance papers and even the scheduling of rides to and from the hospital. Recognizing patient navigation services as a critical component of overall patient care, the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer recently announced that, to meet new accreditation requirements, all cancer centers must offer these services by 2015. Morristown Medical Center invested in navigation services several years ago when hiring a gastrointestinal nurse navigator at the Carol G. Simon Cancer Center and another navigator to assist patients at the Carol W. and Julius A. Rippel Breast Center. Grateful patient Tom Marino made generous gifts this year and last toward the GI navigator position because of the extraordinary care he received from Aaron H. Chevinsky, MD, during an
late mother’s letters.
emergency operation. “He saved my life,” says Mr. Marino. “I know that navigation services is a program that he wants supported, so if that’s what he wants, that’s what I’ll do.” Looking to add navigation services to palliative care, donor Bev Afonso and another anonymous donor recently offered their financial support for this new position. Mrs. Afonso had found it difficult to keep on top of the little things when helping her husband during his last days battling brain cancer: “I am hoping that this new position will help people like me who didn’t know who to call or where to go for assistance.” To kick off funding for a new navigator position at the Women’s Cancer Center, donor and volunteer Mary Lou Mauro recently hosted a coffee reception with Daniel Tobias, MD, speaking about the vital need for navigation services in this area. In addition to funds raised at the reception, a substantive anonymous gift came in toward this position. “Morristown Medical Center is committed to providing an environment that encourages healing and patient support,” says Ms. Mauro. “The nurse navigator will be a critical component to assuring that all patients who require navigator assistance will be able to receive it.”
Foundation Journal Winter 2013