What do you do at KEMP?
I work as an Occupational Therapist In the Day Hospice. My role is to provide advice on activities of daily llvlng, aiming to maximise a person's Independence in activities that are Important to them. This can be by teaching them alternative ways of carrying out an activity, or by provlding equipment and adaptlons. I also provide advice on coping strategies and look at how to manage particular symptoms such as fatigue and anxiety. I can see patients who attend the Day Hospice either in the Hospice setting, as an outpatient, or by visiting them In their own homes. I offer 1 to 1 and group sessions. The purpose Is to help people to carry on living as independently and comfortably as possible in their home environment.
Why did you start working / volunteering at KEMP?
I first developed a special Interest in palliatlve care whilst working on the GP unit as part of the Intermediate Care team in Kidderminster. As there were no palllative care beds In the Kidderminster locality, the unit supported a lot of patients at the end of their llfe. My Interest grew and I completed a palliative care course.
It was the patient group and my interest In palliative care that inspired me to look into the Job at KEMP. The team and the Hospice were also so warm and welcoming when I looked around which helped encourage me to join the team at KEMP.
Why do you think KEMP Is specIal?
I feel that KEMP has a relaxed and calming atmosphere. The main focus is on the patient and their families, with the aim to enhance quality of life. The Hospice being small helps maintain the focus on the patient. As a therapist working In the Hospice I feel I am In the privileged position to have time to build rapports with patients, and that this can happen over a period of time both at the Hospice and within their own home.
What do you get out of working at KEMP?
I find my work at KEMP very rewarding. I feel privileged to be able to work with patients and their families at this time of their lives, seeing them both In the Hospice and In their own home environment. I have the time to spend with patients and listen to their needs and wishes. It gives me job satisfaction when it Is possible to help someone to maximise their Independence or help them to be able to carry out an activity that they were previously struggling with.
I enjoy working within a close multkJlsclplinary team, all working together with the same goal, to Improve the quality of life for the people we support.
What difference do you think KEMP makes to the community of the Wyre Forest?
All teams within the Hospice provide a large amount of specialist palliative care services to patients and their families In the Wyre Forest area. These services Include Day Hospice, Hospice at home, complementary therapy support, chaplaincy, family support, welfare & financial advice and access to consultants, Macmillan nurses and psychology support.
KEMP, I imagine (and I get told by patients and carers) makes a different to people in different ways and it is very personal and Individual.
For example, It may be that having a loved one attend the Day Hospice once a week provides their carer with an Invaluable day of respite. For the lndlvldual attending Day Hospice, It gives them the opportunity to establish friendships with people who may be experiencing similar Issues as them. They have access to nursing staff advice and a regular nursing review, Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy Input, as well as the opportunity to have a relaxing massage, get involved in creative therapies and have a lovely meal.
It could be that Input from family support team helps the family to come to terms with a loved one being diagnosed and living with an incurable illness; or that a Hospice at home nurse visiting at home at the end of life provides a carer with a night's sleep that they desperately need to be able to continue caring for their loved one at home.
Support and advice from Citizens Advice could help relieve stress and anxiety for someone who Is trying to fill In confusing forms to apply for a benefit.
KEMP can make a difference to people In different ways and It can be the smallest of things such as a piece of advice, a listening ear or an ttem of equipment that helps to make a difference to an indlvldual and their family at this time in their lives.