RSL LifeCare residents and staff have sent their congratulations to former nurse and current RSL LifeCare ANZAC Village resident, Teresa Plane, following Ms Plane being named the NSW Senior Australian of the Year for 2023. Ms Plane was awarded the honour for her services over decades, supporting Australians requiring palliative care.
Ms Plane studied palliative care methods overseas, before returning to Australia and opening a hospice and palliative care unit in 1978 at Mount Carmel Hospital in Seven Hills. In addition to caring for hundreds of patients during her years as a registered nurse, Ms Plane also acted as an advocate for the dying and the bereaved via the charity she founded in 1980 (The Outstretched Hand Foundation).
Ms Plane also established Macquarie Hospice, a Home Care and Day Care Centre, in 1984 – and has spoken on the importance of palliative care as part of national and international forums and conferences over many years.
RSL LifeCare CEO, Janet Muir said Ms Plane was an inspiration to so many, including her.
“Teresa thoroughly deserves the accolade of being named NSW Senior Australian of the Year 2023,” Ms Muir said.
“Her resilience, care and commitment to such a necessary cause is extraordinary and her tireless efforts to ensure others have the dignity they deserve in their most vulnerable hours of need is truly humbling.”
RSL LifeCare’s ANZAC Village Manager (in Narrabeen), Stephanie Stoddard said Ms Plane was a valued and popular resident, who at 89, is still continuing to advocate for palliative care needs and support across her community.
“I was so delighted when Teresa was announced as the NSW Senior Australian of the Year for 2023, as were the staff and residents of ANZAC Village when they found out” Ms Stoddard said.
“Teresa has been part of our ANZAC Village community since 2020 and from the beginning, she has embraced village life as an active member of the Veterans Voices choir, as well as volunteering at our Residential Aged Care Facilities. Her twice-weekly radio shows are also broadcast from our chapel.
“Teresa is an inspiration to us all and it is a privilege that she has chosen ANZAC Village as her home. Teresa continues to be a passionate advocate for palliative care and she would certainly be a worthy national winner when the awards screen next year. We look forward to celebrating Teresa’s achievements thus far and she will have the whole village cheering for her on Australia Day 2023.”