The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital (The Neuro) is pleased to announce a new initiative designed to ease the suffering of seriously ill patients through specialized consultation and comprehensive care.
The Susan Cameron Cook Neuro-Palliative Care Program, named in honour of Susan Cameron Cook, whose family provided vital seed funding for this initiative, has the goal of reducing the mental and physical suffering of neurological patients and their families in the journey from diagnosis of a terminal illness to end of life.
Patients with terminal neurological diseases typically live longer than those with other terminal illnesses, up to five years or more. They are also younger than the average terminally ill patient. Once all the elements are put into place, The Susan Cameron Cook Neuro-Palliative Care Program will meet the unique and complex needs of those suffering from severe neurological diseases, including brain tumor, neurodegenerative diseases, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and progressive multiple sclerosis. One of the key aspects of this initiative is that it will not just focus on the end of life care in the hospital or in hospice, but looks to improve quality of life earlier and throughout the continuum of the disease to enable patients to live well.
By providing a point of contact to navigate the healthcare system, the Susan Cameron Cook Neuro-Palliative Care Program will better support and provide more holistic care for patients and their families. Patients will be assigned a specialist with palliative care training, who will lead an interdisciplinary team to ensure all patient needs are met.
As a teaching hospital, The Neuro hopes to become a Canadian centre for training in neuro-palliative care and that this initiative will be one of the first of its kind in Canada.
The care of patients with neurological disease will be increasingly important in the coming years. One in three Canadians will suffer from neurological disease or injury in their lifetimes, and in Quebec alone 2.6 million people are affected. As our population ages, the prevalence of neurological diseases will increase and therefore the need for specialized care will become more critical.
“This program will lift great burden off the shoulders of those suffering from serious neurological diseases,” says Dr. Guy Rouleau, Director of the Montreal Neurological Institute. “It is also another example of MNI at the forefront of innovative approaches to providing patient and family care. I would like to thank the Cook family for their foundational support in making it all possible.”
The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital — The Neuro---is a unique academic medical centre dedicated to neuroscience. Founded in 1934 by the renowned Dr. Wilder Penfield, The Neuro is recognized internationally for integrating research, compassionate patient care and advanced training, all key to advances in science and medicine. The Neuro is a research and teaching institute of McGill University and forms the basis for the Neuroscience Mission of the McGill University Health Centre. Neuro researchers are world leaders in cellular and molecular neuroscience, brain imaging, cognitive neuroscience and the study and treatment of epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and neuromuscular disorders.