Gethin Jones and Helen Skelton were joined by Jonnie Irwin, a presenter who bravely shared his own experience with palliative care since his terminal cancer diagnosis in August 2020.
Jonnie has accessed palliative care since he was first diagnosed and called his experience with his local hospice “a delight”.
He states his perception of hospice care prior to his diagnosis was “a boiling hot room full of people that look frail and are towards the end of their days”.
His perception is now completely different. He notes that hospices are spacious, energised and comfortable, praising the staff for their amazing work.
Dr Ranj also shed some light on the subject of palliative care, adding important facts to try and reframe misconceptions.
Here at The Myton Hospices, we’d like to echo the points raised during this discussion, it’s positive to hear people in the public eye spreading awareness and debunking myths.
We understand the fear and hesitation when mentioning these topics to patients and their loved ones but we want to make sure people know about the services available to them, from the moment they first need them.
Contrary to popular belief, our services extend far beyond end of life care. We offer a spectrum of services right from the point of diagnosis, including symptom control and Advance Care Planning.
Our focus is always on quality of life, with our services including holistic care and support in areas outside just the medical needs of the patient. We support patients and their loved ones with psychological and spiritual wellbeing too.
Just like Jonnie’s experience, we can provide care for patients from the point of their terminal diagnosis and can support them for weeks, months or even years. We are so glad that patients, like Jonnie, are accessing services this early on in their journey but we want to make sure this is available to everyone.
We offer support to anyone aged 18 or over living with a terminal illness in Coventry and Warwickshire. Whilst some of our services require a referral from a Health Care Professional, others including Wellbeing, Respite and Myton at Home can be accessed through self-referral.
Another big misconception is around the cost of hospice care. As Dr Ranj highlighted, hospice care is provided free of charge and relies heavily on fundraising to support this.
At The Myton Hospices, we rely on the generosity of our supporters to enable us to continue providing our services free of charge. We need £13.25 million this year, with just 20% of our funding coming from the NHS.
Lastly but by no means least, we cannot emphasise the incredible dedication and compassion of our staff and volunteers enough – they are all truly amazing!
We are so pleased that Morning Live is helping to break down barriers and change perceptions to ensure everyone living with or caring for someone with a terminal illness can access the support they need, now and in the future.