My name is Oliver Mallon and I’m one of the Specialist Hospice Nurses that provides palliative care to families in their homes across Northern Ireland. In fact most of the care that the NI Hospice delivers happens outside our Adult and Children’s Inpatient Units. Many people are surprised when they find out that.
The care we provide is needed by so many people, and as you read this letter our nurses are probably helping a neighbour, or a family in a home not far from you. Unfortunately, the life-limiting illnesses that affect so many people can leave families feeling scared, lost, and don’t know where to turn.
But we are there to help.
We assess patients and help determine the best treatment plan to develop with GPs and district nurses helping with complex symptoms, managing pain and providing emotional support for our patients and their families. With our help we can achieve symptom control and prevent them getting any worse. We are only a call away and can quickly assess the problem and adapt medications to help our patients remain pain free and maintain a better quality of life.
We haven’t stopped caring for patients and families during the COVID-19 pandemic, together with my colleagues, we have been visiting our patients every day. I know for some families we are someone they can rely on, for advice in the most challenging of circumstances, and our visits can bring a little light on dark days.
It is my privilege to share Colleen’s story with you. Colleen is an amazing woman with a strong loving family. I’m so proud that I can help Colleen and her family at this time. I would ask that you read her story, she is unique, but sadly, her situation is not.
How your support can help
If you are able to continue to support us it would mean so much to your community. This year we have seen referrals to our service grow and over the last 10 months we’ve cared for around 3,500 people. Your help can make all the difference. We appreciate every single donation we receive, and I know that it really does change people’s lives.
To give you an idea of some of our costs, one set of scrubs for each of my team costs £74.86. £240.10 could pay for one fully equipped Health Assessment Kit to allow detailed patient plans to be developed. Kits includes items like, thermometer and ear probes, finger pulse oximeter, blood pressure cuff and stethoscope. £1200.50 could pay for the entire team to have a fully equipped Health Assessment Kit.
By donating to this essential service, we can continue to provide high-quality and compassionate palliative care to local people in our community who need it most. Thank you.