Woman thanks hospice for grandmother’s end of life care

Joyce Fish with her son Martin, daughter in law Jill, and granddaughters Aimee and Harriet Fish.

A woman whose grandmother received end of life care from a local hospice care charity has spoken about what it meant for her to remain in her own home surrounded by family and friends.

Speaking at the start of Hospice Care Week, Harriet Fish has praised the support her ‘nana’ Joyce received from Herriot Hospice Homecare.

Joyce, 86, was cared for by Herriot’s team of healthcare assistants in the last few weeks of her life.

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Harriet said: “It meant she was able to stay in her own home, with her familiar possessions and surroundings, and where family were able to spend as much time with her as possible – a great comfort to both her and the family.”

“Nana was treated with great respect from the Herriot team, who made her feel very relaxed and secure in their care. She had a great sense of humour right to the very end and we often heard her having a giggle with the carers.”

“Having the support of Herriot enabled Nana to have a peaceful and dignified death in the comfort of her own home with her family by her side. This was exactly as she had wished, and we feel very grateful to Herriot Hospice Homecare for making this possible.”

Harriet has shared her family’s experience as part of Hospice Care Week, a national initiative taking place from 8 – 14 October to raise the profile of hospice care across the UK. The theme of this year’s event is ‘Heart my Hospice’, which encourages people share the reasons their local hospice holds a special place in their heart.

As well as being a patron of Herriot Hospice Homecare, Rosie Page, daughter of James Herriot author Alf Wight, also volunteers as part of the charity’s driving and befriending services.

Rosie said: “One of the most rewarding parts of my work as a GP was helping to keep patients as comfortable as possible during times of serious illness. When I retired, I felt very fortunate to be able, in a small way, to continue that work as a volunteer with Herriot Hospice Homecare.

“Supporting people who are terminally ill is inspiring, humbling and very fulfilling – and for the past 15 years has become one of the most important parts of my life.

“I think it is vital to spread the word about hospice care in general, and Herriot Hospice Homecare in particular, and to encourage people to support the wonderful work that they do.”

Chief executive of Herriot Hospice Homecare, Tony Collins, explained what the support of the community means to Herriot: “As a hospice without walls at the heart of the Hambleton and Richmondshire district, Herriot has been offering personalised support for families affected by terminal illness for more than a quarter of a century.

“It is amazing to see our community come together as part of Hospice Care Week to tell us what Herriot Hospice Homecare means to them, and to celebrate the wonderful volunteers, staff and supporters whose wholehearted passion and commitment make our very special care possible.”

Herriot offers care, free of charge, to local people affected by terminal illness across 1000 square miles of Hambleton and Richmondshire. As a ‘hospice without walls’, the charity’s services reach out to hundreds of people each year, delivering personalised and responsive support in their own homes.

People across the district are encouraged to show their love for local hospice care this October by volunteering with Herriot Hospice Homecare, fundraising or donating to support the charity’s vital work or helping to raise awareness.

1 Comment

  1. Herriott Hospice Homecare & Marie Curie nurses made a huge difference to the last few weeks of my husband’s life. Without them to support us, our family & friends, he wouldn’t have been able to stay at home. HHH is an amazing service.

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