A Look inside: Palliative Care

By Rebecca Turner

Palliative care is the end of life initiative that is put in place to make patients and family as comfortable as possible during heartbreaking times.

In Australia, palliative care had a 56 per-cent increase over the 10 year period of 1999-2009, with one in three patients dying while under palliative care.

This initiative is not only offered in hospitals but at patient’s homes and hospices.

On 29 October  2010, my family lost their rock. Grandma was the one person that kept us all together as a unit. Joan Condon was two days short of her 84th birthday when she lost her battle with lung and later bone cancer.

“It was a strange feeling of sadness and relief,” Colleen Maree, her youngest daughter said.

Rebecca Turner and Joan Condon

Colleen had been flying from the Gold Coast to Newcastle every weekend for the last two months of her mother’s life.

“The nurses from all stages of mum’s journey were absolutely incredible,” she said.

Colleen said that the nurses comforted Joan as much as they comforted our family.

“I am forever grateful for their support, I don’t think nurses get enough credit for what they do,” she said.

“Mum was moved into her own room on her last day, it felt homely and that is such a hard thing to find when losing a love one.”

The love and compassion they show to patients and their family during a tragic time is something that should be rewarded.

Palliative care was only a small part of Joan’s four year journey with cancer but it is the part that I will also be thankful for.

To read more of Rebecca’s work visit http://turnerebecca.wordpress.com/