Courtney Knight, recreation therapist at the VGH Tuberculosis Unit, holds one of two iPads bought for patient use with funds donated by the VGH Thrift Store.
Thanks to a $2,500 donation from the VGH Thrift Store, patients receiving treatment for tuberculosis (TB) at VGH feel less isolated from family and friends and more engaged with the world.
The VGH TB Unit treats about 200 patients a year. Treating TB can require a person to remain in hospital for weeks — even months — in relative isolation because TB is an infectious airborne disease. Once diagnosed with TB, patients are not permitted to leave the unit at any time during treatment. In some cases, patients with multidrug-resistant TB are asked to stay in their room for extended periods, isolating them even further.
Courtney Knight, recreation therapist on the TB Unit, bought two iPads with the VGH Thrift Store's donation to help ease the isolation for patients.
“On a unit where there's a lot of focus on how you're doing physically," she says, “the iPads help address patients' mental health by connecting them to family and by giving them things to do that are meaningful and that give them a sense of accomplishment, so they don't feel like they're just counting the days and months until they're discharged."
Patients use the iPads to FaceTime with loved ones, to listen to audiobooks and podcasts and to play solo and group games. Meditation apps and other colouring apps are also popular.
“The iPads have already made a big impact for our patients and such a welcome addition for recreation therapy — thank you!"
The VGH Thrift Store's donation to the VGH TB Unit is just one example of the store's many recent donations. Total donations towards VCH-Vancouver acute and community services since 2016 top $80,000, and the store is close to its $50,000 fundraising goal to buy a rapid infuser for the VGH ED.
Store donations benefitting VCH-Vancouver patients, clients and residents wouldn't be possible without your support. The VGH Thrift Store welcomes your clothing, books and other household items for resale. Please drop off donations during store hours only.
Store hours: Mon – Sat 10 to 5 pm; Sun 1 to 5 pm
Address: 2535 E. Hastings St.