Patti Melanson, advocate for vulnerable Haligonians and Order of Nova Scotia winner, has died

Patti Melanson, an advocate for the rights of vulnerable Haligonians — such as the right of homeless people to access health care and mental health treatments — has died after a three-year battle with cancer.

Melanson died on Saturday at home while surrounded by her family.

A practicing nurse in Nova Scotia for more than 25 years, Melanson was the visionary behind the Mobile Outreach Street Health team (MOSH) and helped remove barriers to health care for people with complex medical and social problems.

MOSH, which operates as part of the Halifax North End Community Association, provides collaborative care to people who are “homeless, insecurely housed, street involved and under-served in our community,” according to the group’s website.

Last month, Melanson was named to the Order of Nova Scotia.

The province’s biography notes that “Patti saw the important connection between health and housing” and was a “passionate advocate for people who often live at our community’s margins.”

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