A kit to comfort cancer patients

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A text ofAriane Perron Langlois

This kit includes a blanket, a water bottle, a box of mints, a notebook of mandalas and a card of encouragement made by children of the region.

The Eastern Quebec Cancer Association (ACEQ) has launched the project to increase the comfort of patients during their treatments, which can last up to eight hours.

Each object of the kit aims to meet the needs expressed by patients.

Very concretely, often people who are in chemotherapy treatment will be cold, go thirsty or have a metallic taste in their mouths. There is all this inside the kit to make their life easier, says ACEQ's Executive Director, Nelson Charette.

The association estimates that approximately 2,000 patients from Bas-Saint-Laurent, Gaspésie, Côte-Nord and Îles-de-la-Madeleine will receive these kits during the first year of the project.

The initiative of a patient

The project was born out of the idea of ​​Judy Martin, who received a package prepared by her older sister when she began chemotherapy treatments in 2012.

The blanket keeps you warm during the treatments, not necessarily only physically, but warm to the heart. Because it was someone who thought of you, who knew that the treatments would be difficult and who just wanted it to be a little less severe for yousays Martin.

Judy Martin is behind the "comfort kits". Photo: Radio-Canada / Jean-Luc Blanchet

It envelops the heart of every patient, I hope.

Judy Martin, founder of the "La Cloche" Fund

Since then, Ms. Martin has created the Bell Fund, which provides comfort kits to patients at the McGill University Health Center (MUHC) in Montreal.

Judy Martin says she is "very proud" that a similar project is being set up in Eastern Quebec since she received some of her treatments in Rimouski.

The first 3000 kits prepared by the ACEQ were funded in full by a $ 125,000 donation from the Molson Foundation.

They will be distributed by volunteers and nurses at 16 oncology clinics in the region.