Aventura Circle and Aventura Comprehensive Cancer Center celebrate the holidays

Arlene Merrill, RN with Phil Fusca

The Aventura Circle and the Aventura Comprehensive Cancer Center rang in the holiday cheer with their annual celebration of the season of giving. This year’s recipients were cancer patients who were treated to hand-knitted and crocheted coverlets.

The Aventura Circle is a voluntary organization of the Aventura Hospital comprised of staff and hospital volunteers who meet weekly. Their most recent project is knitting and crocheting for those receiving life-saving, chemotherapeutic infusion. Many patients receiving these medically necessary treatments often suffer adverse side effects of chills and sensitivity to temperature change.

“My mother is a cancer survivor,” stated Arlene Merrrill, RN, Director of Infection Control at Aventura Hospital and organizer of the Aventura Circle. “So I am keenly aware of many of the needs of patients undergoing treatment.”

“When we decided on our group’s project, we debated on how and to whom we would distribute the fruits of our labor, and immediately thought to contact the Aventura Comprehensive Cancer Center who were more than glad to assist in the process,” stated volunteer Mary Pecora. Cancer Care Navigator Phil Fusca, MSW, of the Cancer Center, helped with the distribution.

Each of the Hospital’s affiliated medical oncology offices received an allotment for their patients to be distributed by their infusion nurses. “These are so beautifully made and each one is unique,” remarked Lili Zhang, RN, infusion nurse at Dr. Marc Saltzman’s office. “I know my patients will really appreciate the warmth provided in so many ways.”

For those interested in volunteering for the Aventura Circle, knitting lessons are provided along with the opportunity to give back to the community. Those interested should become an AHMC volunteer by contacting Judy Newell at 305-682-7391.

For information, visit online at AventuraHospital.com or go to AventuraComprehensiveCancerCenter.com.

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