1. What is your name?
2. Which hospice do you work for?
Msunduzi Hospice Association
3. What do you do there?
4. How long have you been there?
1. Why did you decide to focus on palliative care?
To help family members realise that death is approaching. To provide more information about the diagnosis so that they may experience some relief from anxiety, thus minimising stress.
2. What gives you the greatest fulfilment?
My greatest fulfilment comes from being able to deal with family grief, and being able to help families minimise stress. Also, it’s being able to show families different ways of expressing their love and care.
3. What do you find the most challenging?
• Dealing with the family when they are in denial of the patients’ illness.
• Not having enough time to write reports.
• Not getting a salary enough to satisfy my needs.
• The cars we use are too old.
4. What do you think people find the most challenging about a life-threatening diagnosis?
Acceptance – Some family members do not realise that death is approaching.
5. What do you think that you personally bring to your job that reflects who you are as a person?
I am an outspoken person who is not afraid to talk.
6. How do you take care of your own health and balance?
I spend time with family and friends enjoying myself. I also eat a healthy diet and include exercise.
7. What is your advice to anyone else wishing to join your profession?
He or she must be sympathetic towards the needs of others.
8. What is your advice to anyone given a life-threatening diagnosis?
I would advise them to try to adjust to their illness by reviewing their life in terms of goals and achievements. I would also encourage them to understand the dying process.
9. What is your advice to the loved ones of anyone who is given a life-threatening diagnosis?
I would advise them to continue to support the person who is sick and to also understand the dying process. In addition to this, I would also advise them to plan for the care of the dying person.
10. How do your loved ones feel about the work that you do?
They feel sorry for me but they always support me.