Each Blanket Sold at Princess Margaret Hospital Buys Another for a Chemotherapy Patient

Toronto (Dec. 5, 2005) - "Chemo-Buddies" and cozy fleece blankets are helping cancer patients at Princess Margaret Hospital cope while undergoing outpatient chemotherapy treatments.

These new initiatives are part of the hospital's Healing Beyond the Body program, which helps patients deal with the many emotional and social aspects of the disease.

"The diagnosis, treatment and course of cancer often trigger profound feelings of anxiety, depression, worry and isolation in patients and their family members," says Dr. Gary Rodin, head of the hospital's psychosocial oncology and palliative care department.

"We know that people benefit enormously when they receive extra, personal support, information and communication. That's what Healing Beyond the Body is all about."

This week, a team of specially trained volunteers called "Chemo-Buddies" will start providing support to outpatients waiting for their chemotherapy treatment. About 100 patients a day are treated in the hospital's chemotherapy unit.

As well, The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation is offering custom-made fleece blankets with a pocket for feet to help keep patients warm and alleviate the chills that are a common side effect of receiving chemotherapy.

For each $40 blanket sold, the Foundation will match the sale and offer a blanket to a chemotherapy patient as a gift.

"This is a wonderful way to give a gift that keeps on giving, and especially during this holiday season when comfort and joy are important themes," says Paul Alofs, President & CEO, The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation.

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Phone: 416 340 4636
Email: UHN.News@uhn.ca

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