rich emollient used in the management of eczema, psoriasis and other dry skin conditions.


I have recently lost my husband and cared for him at home until he died.
The help I had from my GP and the District Nurses was wonderful and could
not be faulted, the NHS staff are a credit to this country.

On the morning of the day my husband died, he needed a syringe driver for
his medication. The nurse was up and at the walk in centre early to get a
doctor to prescribe the drugs. He would not do this as he had not seen my
husband so a doctor was called from Ashford. He arrived very promptly and
prescribed the drugs. I had to then go out to try and find a chemist or
supermarket that stocked these drugs. I had had no sleep the night before
and was very emotional as I knew my husband was near the end. I was out for
about an hour and a half and by the time I got home, it was very obvious my
husband had deteriorated.

I understand this problem came about because of the Shipman case and the
doctors or nurses cannot keep them at a central store. I just want you to
know how very difficult this situation was for me and if something could be
changed so that families do not have to go through this stressful situation.

I will never be able to thank the NHS enough for the care and consideration
that was given to me and my husband in his last few weeks, there was not one
person who entered my house that I did not feel really cared and I think
every single one of you should be so proud of yourselves.

Written by talkhealth member Tanya


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2 Responses to Care at home

  1. V Robinson

    My husband died at home three weeks after coming out of the local MacMillan Unit. He was on a syringe driver when he came out. We had two carers in four times a day to wash him and keep him comfortable. We had a District Nurse in every day to change his syringe driver and check him for any other problems. The medication for his syringe driver was delivered from our main hospital, 28 mile round trip, every day by taxi. We had a supply of drugs at home to cover all eventualities which might occur in his treatment. Finally we had full and complete support from our local GP, calling or ringing nearly every day, even at weekends. He even gave out his mobile number and came out the Sunday before he died to give him an injection. We had night sitters for the last week before he died to allow me to have a “reasonable” I wouldn’t say good, nights sleep.

    After some of the stories I have heard about how patients are treated when they are dying I do wish that all surgeries were as caring as ours. It hasn’t stopped me having guilt feelings about his passing but realistically he could not have had more care.

    People complain about the NHS and I have heard about other GP’s who give no assistance at all to the families of the dying to keep them at home but we could not have had any more help and what we did have we didn’t have to ask for.

  2. Thank you for sharing your experience Tanya. My mother died 4 years ago, at home as was her wish. She was well cared for – district and community nursing and very involved GP. But, like you experienced, Mom’s syringe driver medication was prescribed but not dispensed, and of course, we needed it in the middle of the night on a bank holiday weekend. Stressful and very distressing. The out of hours doctor insisted that Mom be admitted to hospital for the syringe driver medication, to relieve pain and help her breathe, but that was not her wish and we stood our ground. She eventually got her meds at home at 2am. Mom died two days later, peacefully, at home.

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