The Erie St. Clair Cancer Program is proud to recognize the outstanding contributions of two devoted patient advocates who are being honoured posthumously with Human Touch Awards from Cancer Care Ontario. These awards are presented annually to recognize exemplary and compassionate patient care.
Michelle Prince and Barb Lather truly demonstrate the human touch qualities this award celebrates. Their legacies continue to live on in the lives of the people they have inspired and the patients who continue to benefit from their work.
Michelle Prince, Volunteer and Patient Advocate
After Michelle was diagnosed with advanced colon cancer in 2014, she decided to live her journey publicly and selflessly for five years, despite enduring over 80 chemotherapy cycles and three major surgeries.
Michelle’s quest was to instill positivity and have an impact on people by educating and inspiring those around her.
She started a radio talk show called “Taking Charge of your Health” and invited the community to call in with their thoughts and questions.
She also started the Michelle Prince Education and Inspiration Facebook page and even streamed one of her treatments through Facebook Live. Her goal was to make the experience a little easier for others. She helped start a program (recently renamed the Dr. Michelle Prince Comfort Care Tote) to welcome patients to the systemic suite with a care package.
A celebration to honour Michelle and recognize her contributions to improving the experience for patients will be held in the Cancer Centre later this summer.
Barb Lather, Program Manager, Thamesview Family Health Team and Patient and Family Advisory Council, Erie St. Clair Regional Cancer Program
As program manager at the Thamesview Family Health Team, Barb Lather was passionate about improving the health of everyone she met.
She led several initiatives to improve the lives of people with cancer. She was the co-creator of a unique Sharing & Caring support group for people living with cancer. She also volunteered as co-facilitator of a group called Master Your Health, which supports people with chronic diseases.
Barb’s dedication to helping others continued even during her own ongoing battle with cancer. Barb made a video about her experience to help others as they go through their treatments. Her spirit and commitment to making a difference were strong even as her health worsened.
Her truly inspirational legacy lives on through the Chatham Kent Health Alliance Oncology Gift Basket program, which she co-created with her friend Karen Brodie (who also passed away from cancer). Upon learning of the program, the community began to donate to the initiative and gift baskets are still being delivered to the oncology department today.
A celebration to honour Barb and recognize her contributions will be held at the Thamesville Family Health Centre later this month.
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