“I’m not afraid to use the word ‘death'”, Dr. Paul Warshawsky told the audience. There’s no point of sugar coating the inevitable. We need to speak in sensitive yet clear terms, the chief of the Jewish General Hospital Intensive Care Unit told the audience at the 14th annual JGH Mini-Med School.
This year Mini-Med is presented at the Cote Saint-Luc Men’s Club. This is the first time Mini-Med is delivered in the community as opposed to in the hospital.
Dr. Warshawsky was true to the slogan of the JGH Mini-Med School, in delivering Medutainment to the masses. As the founder of JGH Mini-Med School I picked up the term, a play on the words medical, educational and entertainment, as coined by my good friend and well-known pediatrician from Tiny Tots, Dr. Ben Burko.
The hour-long presentation at the Cote Saint-Luc Aquatic and Community Centre earlier this week touched on the major aspects of the ICU: its people (doctors, nurses, orderlies, social workers, nutritionists and many technicians), the vast array of high-tech equipment and the types of patients routinely admitted to the unit.
By coincidence, the brand new, state of the art facility had just been inaugurated with a ribbon cutting ceremony a few hours before the Mini-Med lecture. With a generous bequest from the Azrielli Foundation, the unit was renamed in honour of the philanthropic family.
Dr. Warshawsky stressed the importance of having a Living Will, keeping it up to date and ensuring family is informed. We care for the most critically ill with sensitivity and compassion, Dr. Warshawsky said, with an incredible multidisciplinary team of highly skilled professionals. Family members are a very important part of the equation, he added, given that often the patient can no longer speak for themselves.
The good doctor was informative and funny which was most helpful in easing the tension with such a serious topic. The audience appreciated the talk and will be looking forward to the fifth and final lecture with endocrinologist, Dr. Tina Kader, on September 27. Tickets are $10 and will be available at the door starting at 6:30PM with the lecture beginning at 8PM.
Congratulations to the Men’s Club organizers: President Sydney Kronish, 2nd VP and resident funny-man Manny Young and 1st VP and tech wizard Bill Surkis who put on an excellent event.