Montreal

CLSC offers up more home care for family, while others wait

Marilyne Picard's three-year-old daughter, who was born with a chromosomal illness, is happy she will now receive 26 hours a week of in-home care from the Vaudreuil CLSC. But "others need help too," she says.

Good news for 1 mother does not extend to other overtaxed parents

Marilyne Picard has won a battle to receive more health care for her daughter Dylane, 3.

A St-Lazare, Que., mother who fought to receive more care for her daughter from her local CLSC has mixed feelings about the good news she received this week.

Marilyne Picard's three-year-old daughter Dylane, who was born with a chromosomal illness that causes her to have frequent seizures, will now receive 26 hours a week of in-home care.

That's on top of the four hours of help with housework that she has been receiving since April from the Vaudreuil CLSC.

The CLSC agreed in late October to provide the extra help, which is routinely offered other families in such situations elsewhere in the province. 

Picard was thrilled by the news but remains disappointed that at least one other St-Lazare family with similar needs won't be getting the same added services.

​"I'm very happy about this news, but I think about my friend who has the same problem, and I'm not happy because they need help too," said Picard, co-founder of a group called Parents Jusqu'au Bout which fights for more government help for parents of special needs children.

Other families still in dire need

Anne Gagnon would like to get more has been stymied in her attempts to receive more care for her sons Bradley Wraight, 17 and Kieran Wraight, 12.
Anne Gagnon, who also lives in St-Lazare, has been struggling to provide care for her sons Kieran Wraight, 12, and Bradley Wraight, 17. The boys require constant care due to an undiagnosed condition.

"We literally get up at five o'clock in the morning, we make their lunches, we dress them, change their diapers, feed them, put them in their wheelchairs," said Gagnon.

When the family lived in Dollard-des-Ormeaux, the local CLSC supplied 30 hours a week of home care support for Bradley alone.

That total was reduced to 16 hours for both sons combined in St-Lazare.

"They're taking my children's dignity away. And they're taking my life away. I'm a caretaker. I don't have the pleasure of sitting down and playing a toy or a game with my child. I'm too busy thinking of physiotherapy, of changing their diapers and of speech therapy," Gagnon told CBC.

Gagnon is pleading for more services and is exploring her legal options.

Lucie Charlebois, Quebec's minister for rehabilitation, youth protection and public health, could not be reached for comment on Sunday.

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