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Richie, only 42 years old, was admitted to the Toronto Grace Health Centre after a one-year stay in an acute care hospital recovering from a flesh-eating disease.  He presented with many clinical issues.  Richie arrived at the Toronto Grace feeling hopeless and unable to see a future for himself.  He was clinically depressed and suffering with significant pain from major wounds.  Following assessment, a care plan was developed to manage the pain, nutrition and depression and to simplify the wound care, as well as to deal with concurrent addiction issues.

Using the expertise of Toronto Grace’s palliative care physicians Richie’s pain was controlled.  His depression was addressed by a psychiatrist, and outside expertise was provided to deal with the severity of his wounds.  After a couple of weeks of treatment, the wound care specialist saw him and realized that he was already looking better because Toronto Grace staff were treating not just his wounds but him as a “whole person”.

Notably, the staff also assisted Richie to re-engage with society and his family through the use of a laptop and the Internet, and to utilize Facebook to stay in touch with his children. 

Richie can now get out of bed into a wheelchair has begun his rehabilitation.


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