New member in the Hospice @Home team - East Cheshire Hospice

New member in the Hospice @Home team

Mum Cheryl McDonald is one of the newest recruits at East Cheshire Hospice.

As a part-time health care assistant, she visits patients in their own homes as part of the Hospice @Home unit.

Cheryl has vast experience, having spent her entire career caring for people of all ages.

Yet she admits joining the Hospice in May was one of her best moves.

Cheryl said: “I’m still finding my feet, but already realise what a lovely place it is to work. I’d recommend it.

Health care assistant Cheryl McDonald with four-year-old son Nate.

“It’s a nice environment and as you walk down the corridors everyone is so friendly and everywhere so clean.”

Cheryl is still part of the bank team at Macclesfield and District General Hospital where she spent seven years, including spells in the same day emergency care unit and A and E.

She said: “I’m trained to take bloods so it keeps those skills. I work there a few hours each month. You have to do your bit to support the NHS don’t you?

“There are different pressures in a hospital where you can look after between 40 to 50 patients, whereas Hospice @Home means visiting one patient at a time.

“You concentrate on them and get to know the family and more about the patient.

“It’s so rewarding. You’re helping the person and their family and sometimes you’re the only person a patient may see in a day.

“You can signpost them to where they may need further help. It’s nice to know you can help those choosing to die at home.

“Not everyone wants to die in hospital, while the Hospice is also available if they choose to become an inpatient.”

Cheryl spent 10 years helping disabled children as Cheshire East co-ordinator at Carers Trust4all, having trained as a nursery nurse after leaving school.

Cheryl said: “Hospitals can be clinical and if someone passes away with a cardiac arrest you haven’t got to know that patient. Then it’s on to the next patient and that’s how it works.

“With Hospice @Home you’re able to build up a rapport, sitting with a patient and holding their hand and providing the comfort they need.

“There’s no pressure and you can sit with them for an hour if they wish. Nothing’s rushed.

“At hospital, we’ve sat with patients in their final hours too. They’re comfortable and no one is ever left alone.”

* To apply for a staff nurse vacancy visit

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