Hospice: Knysna Sedgefield Hospice
Name of patient: Nonthobeka
Written by: Knysna Sedgefield Hospice
Diagnosis: Unknown
Message: Palliative care is provided to families and caregivers as well. Our members deliberately extend the comprehensive psychosocial and spiritual expertise that they provide.

In November 2021 Nonthobeka was discharged from hospital to her RDP house where she lives with her 2 of her 3 daughters. The middle daughter was writing her matric exams and the younger, aged 14 stayed home to care for her mother.

The small family lived on the two child support grants that Nonthobeka received at the time.  Unfortunately she had to stop working 3 months prior, as she was too ill.

Nonthobeka was very thin and pale, she was in a lot of pain and had significant shortness of breath, her daughter reported that sometimes her mother would eat and sometimes not.  We explored this feedback and soon discovered that the real reason she didn’t eat was that there was no food in the house!

Knysna Sedgefield Hospice stepped in and provided food parcels for the family (food parcels are provided while applications for a disability grant are processed). Our clinical team put in place a Care Plan to manage her pain and symptoms.

Sadly Nonthobeka died in February, but at the time of her passing her pain was managed and she was comfortable.

With the help of Knysna Sedgefield Hospice’s social worker and care worker, plans were put in place for her children to safely carry on without her which meant she was at peace. Her oldest daughter aged 21 returned home.

Knysna Sedgefield Hospice ensured that the younger daughter got the much needed puberty training she needed and that the school was alerted to her huge personal loss.

Her middle daughter did not pass her matric, much to her and her teacher’s great disappointment, fortunately she will rewrite her exams and she is attending extra lessons with a Hospice Network Partner. She had a part-time job at Food Lovers Market.

How a person dies matters to their family; and it matters to the dying person that their family is going to be safe after their passing.

We routinely do a patient satisfaction survey at the end of each year and Nonthobeka was randomly selected for the survey. Her comment was  “I thought I was just going to die and then Knysna Sedgefield Hospice came and I lived to see my children’s happiness”.