Allcare’s Amputee Peer Visit Support Program
Helping patients transition to life after limb loss
Life becomes a little easier when you have a friend, who really understands.
From an older person with diabetes to a teenage survivor of a traumatic injury, most new amputees feel, alone, depressed and isolated. Sharing experiences, challenges, and fears with a certified peer visitor can reveal solutions, hope and new possibilities.
Patients that undergo amputation often have challenges with the emotional adjustment to the loss of a limb. There is a body of evidence showing that the most effective way to assist patients with the transition to life after limb loss is through peer support from individuals who have successfully moved forward after an amputation.
The amputee peer visitor provides information and emotional support for the new amputee or pending amputee. Peer visitors are uniquely qualified to help amputees cope with negative emotions after an amputation because they have experienced the same emotions during their own recovery and rehabilitation process. James Spiegel is a certified peer visitor (Amputee Coalition of America), adaptive athlete, patient advocate, public speaker, educator and a below the knee amputee. After losing his right leg 4 years ago and not knowing were to turn, James realized that there was a need for certified peer visitors. Since that time, James has done over 500 Peer visits over the last 3 years with patients ranging from pediatrics to senior living. The peer visit is agnostic where the patient is able to have one on one time as well as time with the family. Ideally the patient should be seen pre and post during the amputation process unless refused. Please call 201-397-5615 to schedule.
Every time a connection is made between people who really understand what each other is going though or has gone though, we become stronger, wiser, more aware and ore empowered to see that our extremities do not define our potential. If our hands, our feet are lost to injury, accident, or diseases or they were never there at all, we will overcome and rise to the challenge, to redefine and invent ourselves in best light.
What We Do
- Visit pre or port-operative, in person, over the phone, or through the online community
- Allcare offers monthly support groups for amputees and their families
- Visit the family members or other loved ones
- Meet the parents who are expecting a child with a limb deficiency
- Answer a range of basic to advanced questions about the recovery process, using a prosthesis and concerns of daily living
- Provide emotional support, including an understanding of the grieving process
- Share any and all information and resources
The Benefits of Peer Support Include:
- Improved quality of life for the new amputee
- More successful rehabilitation outcomes
- Improved ability to cope with depression, fear, and feelings of helplessness often associated with amputation
- Faster acceptance of a prosthesis and return to activities of daily living
- Fosters social interaction and participation in activities
- Peer support has been shown to have an even greater impact than education alone for the preoperative amputee patient
- Beneficial to both patient and family members
Losing a limb should impact a person significantly; but it does not define or limit them. It is our challenge to find meaning, purpose and hope in the face of struggles. It comes easy to some and to others, its more difficult. Thus Allcare’s Amputee support system starts at the hospital and is an ongoing process to help everyone meet their goals.
For more information please use the form below, or call 201-397-5615