Patient with Surrey Memorial Hospital staff for What Matters to You Wish Campaign
Written by Catherine O’Donnell , on behalf of Surrey Memorial Engagement Radicals

In June 2018, the SMH Engagement Radical team (Erads) launched the What Matters to You (WMTY) Wish Campaign.

What Matters to You? Day started in Norway in 2014, with the simple goal of encouraging meaningful conversations between patients, caregivers and their families, and their health care team.  

The question is simple and the wishes have been small in monetary value but have had a big impact to our patients, family and staff involved.  

A few examples of wishes granted include:

  • Purchasing a cheeseburger and fries for a swallowing evaluation for a young patient who eats by a PEG tube and breathes through a trach.

  • Funding for memory boxes that an ICU nurse paints and gives to children prior to their parent’s passing so they can decide what they want to go in to the box.
    • The project started after a single mother with a 12 year old son passed away unexpectedly. He asked for a strip of his mom’s heart beat and her ID bracelet. He wore the ID bracelet despite all the ink coming off.
    • It has now extended to provide a lock of hair and fingerprints (as first requested by one little girl).   
  • A colouring book and markers for a patient who had a stroke and is no longer able to engage in many everyday activities.
    • The patient was very excited to receive a wide selection of colouring books, markers and pencil crayons! She was most pleased with all the pictures of animals in the books. Thanks to Cloe Boton who also donated some extra fancy pencil crayons!
  • Gift certificates for a long stay patients children to create positive memories of her hospital stay.
    • The Surrey Memorial Hospital engagement radicals and the care team on N51 and 3 East rallied together to raise funds to provide the two children with gift certificates and unicorns from the gift shop. 
  • A pizza and a pop for a patient and her husband to share a meal together so they could do something “normal” while being assessed for swallowing.
    • “It was honestly beautiful to see.  It was such a “win” for her and her husband as well as for the care team”.
  • Finger nail care for an elderly prolonged hospital stay patient.
    • The patient was extremely grateful and many staff popped in to share in her joy!  A great big thank you to Linda Perks, T8 LPN, that did the nail care for this patient.
  • A hot shave and haircut kindly donated by the owner of Bladez & Fadez Barber Shop
    • The barber refused to be compensated and donated his service.

Asking, listening and responding to what matters to patients is a key feature of patient and family centred care.

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