New Peer Mentoring Program for Patients with Amputations

Reprinted from The Pulse, July 2012 to celebrate the one-year anniversary of the program.

The staff of the Center for Heart & Vascular Care on 5 Anderson and the Prosthetics/Orthotics department are excited to announce the initiation of a peer mentoring program for patients with amputations.

This program is designed to provide an additional resource to help the Center for Heart & Vascular Care and the Prosthetics/Orthotics department to meet the emotional needs of their patients following an amputation.   Emily Sink Moody, BSN, RN-BC, CN III, initiated the work on this project and poured her heart and soul into it.  She spent many hours collaborating with people in and outside of UNC Hospitals to make this happen.

Jacci Harden, Nursing Director for the Center for Heart & Vascular Care, says, “I am proud of the entire team for putting this together and hopeful that it will increase the overall satisfaction and emotional well-being of our patients experiencing such a life altering procedure.”

There are now two individuals with amputations from the volunteer services department that will be volunteering their time to visit patients who have had an amputation.  These volunteers have received training in providing effective peer visits and are excited to offer their story and experience as an amputee to patients that are coping with their recent amputation.   This program is being targeted for vascular patients initially.

Cathy Rodrigues, CCM for vascular surgery, will be evaluating patients with new amputations for their desire to have a peer visit.  She will contact the volunteers to come visit the patient; however, staff are welcome to notify patients of this program as well. Staff having patients who are requesting a peer visit can contact Cathy Rodrigues.  All contact information for these volunteers is located on 5 Anderson.

This program is similar in structure to programs offered at UNC for patients that have experienced a burn or stroke.  If there are any questions/concerns, you may contact Kathy Prichard (kprichard@unch.unc.edu), Cathy Rodrigues (carodrig@unch.unc.edu), or Jill Barham (jbarham@unch.unc.edu) from the Prosthetics/Orthotics department.