Lawrence, Mass. – As she looks ahead to running in the 126th Boston Marathon on April 18, Lyn Perreira of Chelmsford said she will rely on inspiration from her patients for whom she is fundraising in order to reach the finish line.
Perreira, a physical therapist at Home Health VNA, has set a $10,000 goal for durable medical equipment to enhance recovery, ensure safety and increase independence in patient homes. Home Health VNA, a home health care provider of Tufts Medicine, was awarded a Boston Marathon bib through John Hancock’s Marathon Non-Profit Program.
Throughout her 20-year career, Perreira has empathized with her patients’ need for equipment not covered by insurance. Commonly required items include canes, crutches, rolling walkers, wheelchairs, transport chairs, tub seats and commodes.
“Our patients – young or old, either by surgery or an accident – may require equipment to recover which they simply cannot afford,” Perreira said. “The generosity of this community, and all of us working together, keeps our friends, family and neighbors safe at home.”
Perreira, a lifelong runner, was a criminal justice major at UMass Lowell before an injury led her to take an interest in athletic training and then obtain her certification. She changed her major to Clinical Laboratory Science/Medical Technology and went on to earn a master’s degree and doctorate in physical therapy.
Perreira completed three Boston Marathons in the 1990s, before taking a break from running races to raise her twins, Matt and Julia. Since achieving her goal of completing a half marathon by her 50th birthday four years ago, she has continued to train and compete at varying distances. Last October, she finished the Baystate Half Marathon in 2:09:35 – even faster than her training pace.
Perreira, who will celebrate her five-year employment anniversary at Home Health VNA on Marathon Monday, cherishes her close relationships with patients.
“Home care is such a special dynamic. Patients welcome you into their homes, and they’re so grateful for anything you can do to help them,” said Perreira, noting that she especially enjoys hearing her elderly patients’ life stories. “I’m excited not only for another opportunity to run this iconic race, but to make a tangible difference in local patients’ lives.”
To support Home Health Foundation’s Boston Marathon fund-raising campaign for durable medical goods, visit www.homehealthfoundation.org/donate and specify the gift is in honor of Lyn Perreira.
About Home Health VNA
Headquartered in Lawrence, Mass., Home Health VNA is a member agency of Home Health Foundation, a nonprofit organization which provides a full continuum of home health and hospice care in more than 110 communities throughout northeastern Massachusetts, southern New Hampshire and southern Maine as York Hospital Hospice.