“Yoohoo! Cooee!” she cried out of the window into the courtyard below. When that didn’t work she pulled her hanky from inside her sleeve and waved it out of the window to get their attention. A few steps behind her, I smiled fondly at her and the impromptu SOS signal to her great grandchildren below.
Caring for a couple with such different needs can be very challenging at times. Prior to their ill health this couple had travelled extensively around the world and experienced many happy times together. However, J’s Parkinson’s diagnosis and the accompanying frailty meant his mind was active while his body was not.
After B’s husband sadly passed away, it was decided not to tell her the news as she was unable to retain new information.
That first daunting night, J’s absence had shifted the atmosphere. My apprehension intensified as the emptiness hung heavy in the air. His bed lay there next to where B slept, empty for the first time in decades.
Death is as natural as birth, yet do we as western society view it as this? As professional carers it is one of our main duties and responsibilities - to guide the people we care for through this important chapter of their lives.
The day of handover is one of the most important days in a placement. It's a very busy day and can be stressful, not only for the carer, but also for the client, who may be feeling anxious about the change.
These are the areas that the outgoing carer should focus on and pay attention to when preparing for handover:
So much of our work is concerned with keeping our clients away from risks, but sometimes taking well-calculated, managed risks can lead to enjoyable experiences for our clients and help them retain their independence as much as possible.