Since 2016, a total of $450,000 has been donated to charity through the GolfBC Championship, awarded to the BC Cancer Foundation (the tournament’s designated charity beneficiary) and the Red Cross Kelowna (2017 Flood Relief efforts).
This year, while the BC Cancer Foundation will remain as the tournament’s designated charity beneficiary, $50,000 has been pledged in support of a local charity or not-for-profit program that serves and benefits the Kelowna community. Parkinson Society BC has been nominated to receive this award, and we are counting on your votes to reach the top 5 finalists!
Parkinson Society BC (PSBC) has two very active support groups in Kelowna, one for people with PD, and another for carepartners. The groups work to educate and support their members along the journey with this progressive and, currently, incurable disease.
Medical therapy for Parkinson disease is complex, and must be complemented by physical training and prevention of complications like choking, social isolation and communication impairment, caregiver burden and life transitions as patients’ needs increase. Research shows that people who receive appropriate, skilled care have better quality of life and are at a lower risk of complications such as fractures from falls. Access to physiotherapists, speech language therapists and social work assistance is critical.
The Okanagan Movement Disorder Clinic (www.okmove.ca) began in July 2015, to provide comprehensive multidisciplinary care. Currently, there are three clinic days per week, two supported by nursing with either no or limited access to other health professionals. There have been approximately 2000 movement disorder patient visits in that time, and there is a high referral rate.
This specialty clinic serves a critical subpopulation of Okanagan patients. Building allied health services will strengthen this program, reduce hospital inpatient use and may help reduce complications like aspiration or fracture.
In order to increase access to these health professionals, PSBC is prepared to fund staffing for 0.8 FTE of allied health staff, including a physiotherapist (two days per week), a speech language therapist (one day per week) and a social worker (one day per week) for a period of 5 years with transition to Interior Health Authority’s base budget during years 4 and 5.
The $50,000 gift from Gallagher’s Canyon Golf Club and GolfBC would help PSBC fund this much needed expansion of allied healthcare staff at the Kelowna Movement Disorder Clinic.
Voting will be open until Friday, June 7. One vote per device.