By Shannon Traphagen
COVID-19 has left our health providers, essential workers, patients, and families exhausted, as they struggle with ongoing pain, insomnia, depression, and loss. Now, in an environment deeply affected by grief and loss, Dr. Amy Case is helping ease the pain and stress of her patients and staff at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center through small support groups and a Resiliency Program. Dr. Case said, “Our staff carries the weight of our patients on their shoulders, and we need to support them in their ability to provide compassionate care to our patients.”
Dr. Case has found that a small electrotherapy stimulation device is helping both staff and patients. She explains that it delivers a tiny microcurrent to the brain which reports say can help ease pain, insomnia, depression, and anxiety. One staff member, Kathy Schulz RN, said, “This device has really helped me. I am less stressed going into my shifts. I think it should be available on every unit.”
Dr. Case has also experienced the positive effects of utilizing electrotherapy. Both her personal experience, and her staff’s positive feedback, prompted her to apply for a grant to make the therapy more readily available. Currently, 20 palliative care patients using the device have reported improvements in their sleep, pain, stress, and anxiety levels. Patients who would like to purchase the device can do so, and can also apply for help with its purchase through Roswell Park’s Angel Fund.
Amy Case, MD, FAAHPM, is the Lee Foundation Endowed Chair of Palliative and Supportive Care at Roswell Park. The services of the Survivorship & Supportive Care Center are open to any cancer patient in the region. For more information, visit www.roswellpark.org/cancer-care/support or call 716-845-1619.