On National Nurse Day, we celebrate the wonderful team of nurses at Dove House Hospice who care around the clock for their patients. They all share a great passion for their work.
Natalie’s passion is palliative care. She says: “To be able to look after the patient in a completely holistic way while also being able to look after the family is special. They haven’t lost sight of what is important at Dove House and it is individual care, that total involvement with the patient and the family. I actually feel honoured to look after someone at the end of their lives. I feel it is a very privileged position because a lot of the families accept you as part of their extended family. You know them, they know you. The memories the family go away with last a long time. The most important is that the end is peaceful and they have the people that count with them. Not all of our patients die, some come for respite and for pain management and again this is a positive experience. If patients come with a lot of pain or sickness we can sort that out for them and they go home and enjoy more time in their own surroundings. “
Rosie loves coming to work. She says: “It can be hard and emotional but it is so rewarding sharing last days with patients and their families in a way they want. They really do welcome us into their family.”
The nurses often talk about the ‘luxury of time’ that they have, working at Dove House in comparison to working in a time pressure environment like a hospital. They are able to spend time with their patients and it makes all the difference. Rosie says: “Even the little things, like taking time to hold a patient's hand, brush their hair or sit and colour with the small child of a patient and make hot chocolate for them is such a privilege. It really is patient-centred care here.”
The dedication and care of the whole clinical team and volunteers know no boundaries. Whether patients come for pain management, respite care or palliative care, the impressions they make on the patients and their loved ones is long lasting.
Here is what some of them had to say:
“My grateful thanks to all staff who cared for my partner whilst in for pain management. His 3 weeks of love I'll always remember. A big thank you to all the people who helped put together our wonderful Christmas meal that we were able to share together. Big hotels could not have set things up better. Many thanks.”
“My husband loved his respite care with you and came home with even more joy. Thank you.”
“Thank you for all the excellent and meticulous care for my partner’s needs while he had respite care. I couldn't have wished for a better place for him - he'd really been pampered. Wiltshire Farm Food dinners paled into the shade after eating with yourselves.”
“Thank you. Simply the best. Better than all the rest. Nurses' and doctors' smiles and cheerful banter bring a welcome relief from everyone's sickness. God bless you all.”
Services at Dove House Hospice are available free of charge 365 days of the year to anyone over the age of 18 years who has a life-limiting illness. As you have heard here, the nurses are vital to delivering the high standard of care Dove House has become known for. However these services are not free to provide. It costs £14 to fund the hospice services every minute. Funds currently generated by the Lottery provide sufficient income to fund the equivalent of 14 nurses here at the hospice. A year ago, we launched the Provide a Nurse campaign to increase the funding provided through Lottery activities to fund the equivalent of a further 4 nurses here at Dove House. Thanks to your generosity so far we have generated sufficient funds to cover the cost of 2 further nurses, but we still need your help to achieve our goal and fund two more.
To support our campaign, join here.