Lillian John aged 92, East Ham
Lillian was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer more than 9 years ago. She was receiving home visits from the Community Palliative Care Team at St Joseph’s Hospice when they recommended that she might like to come into the Day Hospice once a week.
Lillian loves Day Hospice and has been coming on and off for many years. As Lillian’s illness progressed the Day Hospice team felt a couple of weeks of respite care might help her manage her condition. Respite is just a short term stay for a couple of weeks, where the nurses and staff on St Anne’s Ward do everything they can to ensure that the patient has everything they need.
What benefit do you get from respite care?
"I've had respite care several times now and I really enjoy coming in. It makes me feel safe as I now live alone since my husband died. I do have carers coming in to help me but it’s not the same as 24 hour care and the company that I get from being here."
What other services do you use?
"Apart from being official dog walker to the chaplaincy dog (Dottie) in the past, she used to hop on my lap in my wheelchair, I have reiki which gives my body warmth and relaxes me. I also have full body massages but they have to be careful as I bruise easily. I’ve also tried acupuncture. I’ll give anything a go once. And I have physiotherapy."
What do you like about the hospice?
“It’s like going on holiday coming to St Joseph’s. I love the company and the pleasure it gives me to be around everyone, the staff and the volunteers and other patients. They spoil you here, you get pampered and they make things happen. They even took me to Iceland the other day so I could get some food for the Harvest festival."