As we conclude our #HospiceVisits at Grahamstown Hospice, we meet Verah Lackay, a carer who is passionate about the work she does.
Verah joined Grahamstown Hospice in 2004 and works predominantly in the Alicedale community. Starting at 08:00am and finishing off at 17:00, she sees up to 5 patients a day. She believes that the patient is the most important person when it comes to care especially when it comes to social and spiritual needs.
Working closely with a nurse when visiting patients in the community, Verah believes that it is very important to identify a close relative or friend who can look after the patient on a more regular basis as carers can only visit patients once to twice a week. With basic training provided by the nurse and carer, this potential “carer” can provide the patient with the necessary care,ensuring that medication is taken regularly and monitoring the health. The carer also gets the necessary support from hospice and if there is any equipment require such as weighing machine, blood pressure machine etc. which can be accessed through hospice.
“We work very close with clinics and hospitals making sure that the necessary follow ups are in place” she said. One of the challenges they are faced with is that most of the patients they attend to lives in poverty. “Most of our patients are unemployed and have no source of income but with the support of the community and the hospice we assist these patients with food parcels” she added.
When a patient passes on, we also provide bereavement care and support to the family. Grahamstown Hospice is always well received in the Alicedale community who knows that we are here to help. I am proud to fly the flag of Grahamstown Hospice in the community I live in and work.