The key aims of palliative live-in care were brought into sharp focus when Baroness Tessa Jowell delivered an impassioned speech to the House of Lords earlier this year.
In this article, we'll celebrate those inspirational words, then look more closely at the things that truly matter when it comes to care at the end of life.
Baroness Tessa Jowell’s inspirational speech
On 25 January, while in the latter stages of her battle against a rare form of brain cancer, Baroness Tessa Jowell stood up to deliver a rousing speech in the House of Lords.
She spoke for 15 minutes on a wide variety of topics, including cancer treatments, support communities and palliative care. Then, in a rare show of unity and respect among politicians, rightly received a standing ovation.
We recommend watching the whole video, but we felt these lines really resonated:
"What would every cancer patient want? They need to know they have a community around them – supporting and caring. Being practical and kind.”
"In the end, what gives a life meaning is not only how it is lived, but how it draws to a close. I hope this debate will give hope to other cancer patients like me. So that we can live well with cancer, not just be dying of it. All of us. For longer."
Palliative live-in care helps you make meaningful choices
The power of this speech and dignity with which Baroness Jowell lived during her final months made us pause and reflect on what's most important in terms of end-of-life care.
Comfort should, of course, be a major consideration. This extends to things like pain medication, mobility devices, specialist equipment or furniture and social interaction. However, self-determination – the ability to choose what you do and when you do it – is also crucial.
Here are some of the most meaningful ways we believe palliative live-in care can make a difference in these areas:
- Care and medication are delivered in line with the care receivers’ needs, rather than according to a set schedule
- Visitors can spend quality time with care receivers, rather than worrying about unmet domestic needs
- Carers will be on hand to provide support 24/7, able to intervene quickly or reach out to healthcare professionals if needed
- The dedicated team of two carers will have the time and focus needed to really get to know the care receiver, and become a trusted companion
- Care receivers can choose how they arrange their days, including when they wake and rest, what they eat and when
- Care receivers can decide how they spend their time, whether that's talking with relatives, making arrangements or compiling thoughts and photos
- Loved ones and medical professionals can stop by when convenient, without worrying about visiting hours or set care schedules
- Care receivers can make decisions about re-organising their home (such as moving a bed or displaying fresh flowers)
Learn more about how palliative live-in care helps support comfort and self-determination by speaking to our experienced team.