We cannot thank all the people we’ve met from the Hospice enough

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Karen’s Mam, Vera, lived in Buckingham with her husband Pat, and had done so since they married 58 years ago. Pat had been ill over many years and Vera was his carer. In the summer of 2020 she started experiencing back pain and in December last year she was diagnosed with lung cancer that had worked its way into her liver and spine.

Karen and her family tried to give Pat and Vera the best Christmas possible and then in January the FNH@Home hospice team were contacted to support Vera and her family at home, where Karen is positive it was best for her to be as she approached the end of her life. Karen and her dad had been looking after Vera at home, and she said that the arrival of a team of people ‘can be overwhelming’.

“One minute you’re caring for your mother practically alone and the next a team takes the reins. You can feel that you were not doing enough as suddenly more is being done.” It can be a feeling of helplessness, but Karen says that the Hospice team were reassuring, telling her and her Dad that they had “done a great job, and that with their help Mam’s last moments with us would be easier.”

The care from the team made all the difference to Karen, her family, and to Vera. They worked seamlessly with the District Nurses to administer medication, and Karen says: “I genuinely think of the people I met as angels, they came in and wrapped their wings around us.” On Sunday 17th January Vera began to deteriorate and Karen stayed over to help her dad and to be there in case. On Monday she contacted the GP and the FNH@Home team. “From there things got busy. Nurses, the FNH@Home care team and GP all worked as one well-oiled machine. The medication was ramped up & I was told who to call & who would be taking care of Mam. The FNH@Home nurse actively encouraged me to lay with her, to spend time with her and not to be scared”

Just a few short days later, and just six weeks after her diagnosis, Vera passed away peacefully with Karen at her side. Karen, and all Vera’s family, miss her terribly. Karen has had bereavement support from the Hospice following Vera’s death and Karen and her family remain grateful for the support and care Vera received at the end of her life, at the home where she had lived since her

Karen says “We cannot thank all the people we’ve met from the Hospice enough. It’s a vital service and we would like more people to have a better end of life. We must raise as much awareness & funds as possible to keep this going.”


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