IN order to support people anxious about using Hospice services and to inform Healthcare professionals as well as the wider public about the support they can receive from the Hospice, St. Luke’s has launched a DVD.
Endorsing the DVD is Leighbeth Winters, who is featured in it together with her late husband Richard who passed away at St. Luke’s Hospice. As Richard’s wife she was also his main support and carer. Leighbeth said ‘’Both Richard and I wholeheartedly supported St. Luke’s in producing what I think is a very informative and reassuring production. When it was first suggested, by our visiting Macmillan Nurse, that Richard could benefit by being in St. Luke’s care we struggled to accept this offer of support – mainly because we were fearful of the word ’Hospice’ and to be honest we didn’t really understand how St. Luke’s would be able to help us.’’
Richard attended St. Luke’s Day Hospice and together with the Hospice’s In-Patient Unit and Hospice at Home Services he received a whole range of support. Leighbeth attended St. Luke’s Carer Support Groups and because of the care and support given by the Hospice she felt better able to care and support Richard.
Leighbeth added ‘’The DVD is an honest and open account of how we felt – I hope it will inspire people to get to know St. Luke’s better – we were truly amazed by the individual care and support, we both received – It made a big difference to the time we were able to spend together both as a couple and a family. I truly don’t know how we would have coped without the support St Luke’s gave us and is still giving me.
Richard also had, from a previous marriage, 3 older daughters all of whom hold St. Luke’s in high regard.
Filmed and produced with generous support from John Simms of 2TA Limited and with voice over by Gateway FM, the DVD is segmented into 3 sections, each specifically tailored to ‘Service users’, ‘Supporters’ and ‘Healthcare Professionals’. All three sections feature patients and their families, service users and staff explaining various aspects of Hospice care and how Hospice support has changed their wellbeing and outlook.
Patients openly share their experiences and thoughts throughout the DVD explaining in their own words initial unfounded fears and anxieties and how through St. Luke’s they found support, friendship, fun, hope and great food!
Marilyn Debattista (Head of Revenue Development, PR & Marketing at St. Luke’s) explained: “The DVD has two main purposes, primarily it is aimed at reassuring people who have misconceptions about Hospice care so may resist initial offers of support as well as informing healthcare professionals about our wider and perhaps lesser known services that they can refer their patients to. It is a project we have been hoping to go ahead with for some while so were delighted when John came forward to offer support. It wasn’t an easy brief as whilst we wanted the DVD to be informative we also wanted it to be something that would resound with people, be engaging and at the same time a true reflection of St. Luke’s Hospice‘’
John, who has been running his technical media company, 2TA Ltd based in Hockley, for 10 years, said ‘’St. Luke’s was introduced to me through a friend. I was a little apprehensive at taking on the project initially considering the gravity of the subject. However, the staff and patients at St Luke’s were so friendly and enthusiastic that we all had a great time filming the DVD. The experience gave me a completely different perspective on the work of St Luke’s and considerable respect for their professionalism and breadth of services. I am extremely pleased in the way the direction of the DVD evolved from our initial concept ideas into a format the Hospice really took on board and ran with. I can’t deny this was a challenging project as St. Luke’s professional attention to detail was absolute (as reflected in their care) but the satisfaction in producing a product we can all be proud of is why I do what I do.”
Marilyn said ‘’We are delighted with the DVD and grateful to everyone involved for their support’’
As well as being used by Hospice staff the DVD is being distributed to District Nurses, GP’s, and other healthcare specialists. Some are also on sale in the Hospice’s reception area at £2.50 each’’