Open Arms Patient Advocacy Society is a non-profit organization formed in 2007 after a traumatic event exposed issues in the health service.

The aftermath attracted attention from the media and others came forward to share their own tragic experiences in health care. This brought Rose Lundy, Linda O’Donoghue, and their families together to form Open Arms Patient Advocacy Society.

Our Founders

The strength of our organization lies not only in the diverse expertise of our Board of Directors and volunteers, but also in our close ties to our original founders, Rick and Rose Lundy, and Joe and Linda O’Donoghue.

Our founders recognized the importance of the common experience they shared. They recognized that sharing their experience would inspire strong self-advocacy and foster transparency, empathy, and partnership between healthcare providers and patients. They created Open Arms Patient Advocacy Society to help others who suffered similar issues but did not have an outlet for help.

Rick & Rose Lundy

On July 18th, 2006 Rose Lundy miscarried in the Emergency Room of a Calgary Hospital in front of fifty strangers. The trauma of the event forever changed Rose and Rick Lundy. The experience prompted them to form an advocacy group to assist patients and families with getting answers when they too suffer an adverse medical event within the healthcare system.

Rick Lundy, Founder & Previous Board Chair (2007-2010)

Rick Lundy is married to Rose Lundy and has twin boys named Jared and Jordan. Through his experience and gained knowledge of the healthcare system, Rick has become a passionate and active participant in improving Alberta’s health care.

Rick served as Board Chair of Open Arms from 2007 to 2010 and served in a variety of capacities on the Board until 2013. He left the Board to run for an elected position on the Calgary Board of Education, but remains an advisor to Open Arms. In 2015, Rick started Minds Over Matter, a mental health organization that works with children, youth, businesses, organizations, seniors, and cultural groups. Rick is also the President of the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Calgary Chapter.

Rose Lundy, Founder & Previous Secretary of the Board (2007-2010)

The trauma that Rose experienced in the emergency room in 2006 left her as a changed person in many aspects. Rose has always been passionate about making a difference and wanted to make changes to prevent others from going through what she endured, or other adverse medical ordeals. This led her to become a founder of Open Arms Patient Advocacy. Due to her life experiences, her training, and what happened in 2006, Rose has a keen interest in mental health, emotional health, and areas of psychiatric care. This is just one of the many areas Open Arms works on and hopes to improve for others. Open Arms has helped hundreds of patients and families, and this enabled Rose to feel less of a victim of trauma and more of a victor over it.

Joseph & Linda O'Donoghue

In April 2006 during a routine ultrasound at 18 weeks of pregnancy, it was discovered that Linda and Joe’s baby had died at 15 weeks. A dilation and curettage (D&C) was required, but Linda waited at home for six days for a call from the hospital to schedule the D&C. After the procedure Linda had severe complications and nearly lost her life. As they sought help and answers during and after this near tragedy, Linda and Joe experienced gaps in the medical system’s processes and procedures. This led them to Rick and Rose Lundy and together they formed Open Arms Patient Advocacy Society.

Linda O’Donoghue, Founder & Previous Board Director (2007-2010)

Linda’s educational background is a Diploma in Early Childhood Education, a Bachelor degree in Child and Youth Care studies and a Master’s degree in Education. The trauma that Linda and Joe experienced in April 2006 deeply and permanently impacted their lives. The physical and psychological harm that Linda experienced compelled her and Joe to join Rick and Rose Lundy in creating Open Arms Patient Advocacy Society. Supporting patients who experience adverse medical events and working towards systemic changes in health regions across Alberta is of the utmost importance to Linda. She hopes for positive change for individuals, health care professionals, and the health care system.

Joseph O’Donoghue, Founder & Previous Board Director (2007-2010)

Joseph is married to Linda O’Donoghue and he became a founder of Open Arms to help others navigate and to address the gaps that he had witnessed in the healthcare system. Joe was on the Board of Directors and was a committee Chairperson for four years. He helped maintain a clear direction for Open Arms, always keeping in mind the focus on clients and advocacy. He remains proud of the work Open Arms is doing for patients and their families.

One of the most important things you can do on this earth is to let people know they are not alone.

― Shannon L. Alder

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