Gov.-Gen. David Johnston presented Teresa Dellar with the Meritorious Service Cross at a ceremony held in Rideau Hall Friday afternoon.
The executive director and co-founder of the West Island Palliative Care Residence was recognised for her contribution to palliative care in Canada and her local community.
“This is an extremely well-deserved honour for Teresa, who is the heart and soul of the West Island Palliative Care Residence and everything it does for our community,” Val Pietrantonio, president of the Operations Board of the Residence, said.
“It is a wonderful tribute to her vision, her determination to bring that vision to reality, and her commitment to continually enhance the care the residence gives those who seek comfort and fulfilment in their final days,” he added.
Dellar co-founded the residence in 2002, making it the first facility in Montreal to offer end-of-life care in a residential setting.
The WIPCR is the largest of its kind in Canada and has welcomed more than 3,500 patients since its inception, the majority of which are in the final stages of ALS, multiple sclerosis, cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Her leadership as executive director has allowed the non-profit foundation to continuously have stable funding and even allow a recent expansion of the facility.
“The model of holistic care she created for patients and their families is now used in facilities across Canada,” Johnston said.
The Meritorious Service Decorations were first introduced for civilians in 1991, and recognize Canadians for exceptional deeds that bring honour to the country.