Hospices of Hope patient stories February 26, 2018 Thanks to our supporters, we have been able to care for many in desperate need of end-of-life care. We have also been able to explore new ways of providing care with the latest technology, which has the potential to be adapted and used across the world. Here are a few touching patient stories showing how our work is helping those in need, though also highlighting the huge hurdles still to face. Sergiu’s Story Sergiu and his family have been using our facilities at hospice Copaceni – our unique centre dedicated to children with life limiting conditions. Although a happy and healthy baby, sadly Sergiu developed meningitis at just 18 months old which left him unable to speak, see, stand or walk. His family, struggling to cope and living in poor conditions, first got involved with Hospices of Hope who taught them how to properly care for Sergiu, and then an opportunity came up for them to relocate to Copaceni on a more permanent basis. With access to state of the art facilities on offer at Copaceni, including our modern outpatient unit and ‘tech house’ which uses the latest in virtual and augmented reality technology for play therapy, Sergiu is much stronger, happier and more sociable. He has had the care that he needed whilst being given the chance to be a kid – with plenty of opportunities to play and laugh during therapy sessions at the tech house or during our summer daytrips to the seaside. With Copaceni currently under more development, we aim to provide this care to more families who need it across Romania – which is over 5,000 families in the Bucharest area alone – giving access to emergency accommodation and respite trips and the latest in medical training and uses of technology in healthcare. Angelina’s Story As in the case of Angelina, Hospices of Hope is helping many avoid the extreme loneliness and isolation that can come with ill-health in older age. Angelina was diagnosed with two major illnesses when only in her 40s – uterine cancer and also suffering a psychiatric illness. Living with her elderly ill father and not coping, she moved into a nursing home and then eventually found solace at Hospices of Hope’s BELhospice, with the team realising just how isolated Angelina had been since her diagnosis many years previously. Volunteers saw a transformation in Angelina, from a woman who struggled to connect with others to someone who was much happier and sociable in the last days of her life, whilst receiving the vital medical care she needed. Sadly Angelina’s case is not unique, with many people facing slow, painful and lonely ends to their lives due to lack of available hospice care. Hospices of Hope is focused on changing this, exploring new healthcare methods – particularly when it comes to technology in healthcare. From mobile and internet technologies providing vital links between patients and healthcare staff, to AI programs helping patients explore and discuss their end of life issues, we believe technology combined with well-trained specialist staff can provide cost-effective and accessible end-of-life care. Nadia’s Story Nadia’s case is one that demonstrates just how difficult it still is for many to access adequate end-of-life care in Eastern Europe, and in many place around the world. Nadia has terminal breast cancer and is in a confused state, virtually paralysed and bedridden. Though she receives care from Hospices of Hope and her pain is under control, she is still suffering. Her family have to work and a friend who steps in to make sure she has food and water during the day cannot turn or move her, leaving her very vulnerable to bed sores. The waiting list for a carer in Soroca, where Nadia lives, has more than 300 people on it and the medical team can only visit Nadia twice a week at most – not enough to ensure that she lives and dies with dignity. Hospices of Hope is working to promote the cause of people like Nadia who are suffering in their later years, looking for additional funding and support in order to help bring better end-of-life care to more people who are in desperate need of it. Find out more about our work.