Palliative care upgrade in Mount Druitt

Celebrating 20 years of palliative care – Mount Druitt Hospital acting deputy director of nursing David Lazaro, Blacktown and Mount Druitt Hospitals director of nursing Danielle Levis, The Hon. Natasha Maclaren Jones MLC Government Whip and Member of the NSW Legislative Council, WSLHD palliative and supportive care director Dr Sally Greenaway, nurse unit manager Trish Dalgleish, WSLHD Consumer Representative Caroline Raunjak, BMDH general manager Jude Constable, WSLHD chief executive Danny O’Connor and former palliative and supportive care director Dr Philip Lee.

Palliative care patients at Mount Druitt Hospital will benefit from a $658,000 investment in their comfort and security.

The upgrade which started on June 1 will help create a home away from home environment for patients and their families and carers.

The upgrade happily coincides with the unit’s 20th anniversary celebrations.

The Honourable Natasha Maclaren-Jones MLC, Government Whip in the NSW Legislative Council toured the refurbished unit and said it is important to ensure people with a terminal illness have access to quality end-of-life care in the most suitable setting.

The upgrade included new air conditioning, refits of the bathrooms and showers, an upgrade to outside decking, the repainting of wards and a facelift for the gazebo.

Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) is also recruiting two new palliative care nurses to improve palliative care services in the district. The upgrade announcement follows the opening of a number of Mount Druitt projects earlier this year.

These include new facilities for community dialysis, drug health and surgery.\

The ongoing works are in addition to an overall $700 million redevelopment of Blacktown and Mount Druitt hospitals.

Blacktown and Mt Druitt hospitals general manager Jude Constable said the upgrading of palliative care areas would contribute greatly to people’s peace of mind and amenity.

“Comfortable and safe surroundings help people retain their dignity in an end-of-life phase,” Ms Constable said.

The 16-bed Supportive and Palliative Care Unit at Mount Druitt Hospital opened in June 1998 and provides acute care, assessment and symptom control for end-of-life care.

More than 400 patients spend an average of 10 days at the unit each year.

To commemorate the 20th anniversary former director Dr Phillip Lee who is now a WSLHD Consumer Council representative was joined by fellow consumer representative and Parramatta Council Citizen of the Year Caroline Raunjak joined the chief executive Danny O’Connor, acting director of nursing Danielle Levis, director of Palliative and Supportive medicine Dr Sally Greenaway, volunteers and staff.

Congratulations on this 20 year milestone!

WSLHD palliative and supportive care nurse unit manager Trish Dalgleish, former director palliative and supportive care director and Dr Philip Lee and WSLHD consumer representative Caroline Raunjak.