We’ve worked with all the nurses at Isabel Hospice to create a list of five specialist items that we’d dearly love to buy.
Every item on this list will directly improve the quality of life for patients and family members who we meet in the In-Patient Unit or in their own homes. No government or NHS money is available for this Wish List – we are entirely reliant on voluntary contributions from members of our community.
Thank you, most sincerely, for any contribution you feel able to give.
Syringe driver kit
Syringe drivers allow us to administer medicines – especially for pain relief – in precisely measured quantities over a long period of time.
Often, we will be caring for patients who require two or three difffferent medicines, all constantly delivered – each one needing its own syringe driver.
The kit we’d like to buy includes one actual driver (they’re expensive but we get a lot of use from them) as well as the protective box it sits in, the syringes themselves and the lines to transfer the medication into the patient.
A patient who is unable to leave their bed is at severe risk of developing pressure sores.
These are extremely painful (sometimes worse than the pain their actual condition gives them) and so we work very hard to minimise these sores by using specialist mattresses and cushions which help the patient to keep moving their body weight.
One particular pressure point is the heels of the feet – which are always in contact with the sheet for a patient lying on their back.
The foam booties we’d like to buy are incredibly soft and so protect the feet against the agony of these sores.
Mouth care kits
This is something we use for practically every patient we see. These little kits aren’t that expensive – and yet the relief and comfort they bring can offer more than the most expensive machine or the most powerful medicine.
Each kit contains a special toothbrush – which comes with extra sponge pads.
We can soak these pads in water or juice, even a cup of tea (a favourite tipple isn’t unheard of either). It takes all of five minutes to gently clean and moisten the mouth and lips – and it’s amazing the immediate relief this simple act brings to a patient.
For someone unable to swallow, these kits are an essential part of care.
Personal comfort packs
For most patients, there will come a time when they are unable to use the bathroom.
So, we simply use a small tube and special bag – and this completely relieves the patient of the discomfort of a full bladder.
It’s a simple thing we can do, but it makes a huge difference to someone who is unable to ‘go’ on their own.
One of the most important items we need are Intravenous Pumps.
For many patients we see, it’s a constant challenge to manage their symptoms – and give the person the chance to spend precious time with their loved ones.
We need to buy more Intravenous Pumps so that patients can be given a constant, smooth flow of essential medications and fluids.
The pumps are mobile – so a patient can sit out of bed, move around the hospice – even go outside in the garden if they wish. In this way, these pumps give back control of the patient’s life.