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Transforming Lives: The Power of Holistic Care at Westgate Healthcare

Transforming Lives: The Power of Holistic Care at Westgate Healthcare

A Commitment to Holistic Care 

At Westgate Healthcare, we are committed to providing comprehensive care for our residents, with a focus on their physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual well-being. Our caregiving philosophy places our residents at the centre of care planning, taking into account all aspects of their lives and needs. We work as a multidisciplinary team, utilising all available services to achieve the best care outcomes. This is especially important when caring for residents who come to us to spend their remaining time in our care.

Bridging the Gap: Holistic Care and Traditional Nursing Practices

Traditional nursing often focuses on the physical health of patients, but at Westgate Healthcare, we understand that true well-being extends beyond physical symptoms. Our holistic approach bridges the gap by making care more comprehensive and person-centred, addressing not only physical needs but also emotional, psychological, and spiritual aspects.

Luigi’s Journey

Luigi, a beloved local figure known for his violin playing and beautiful garden, exemplifies our approach to holistic care. After years of independent living, he faced significant health challenges, including lower leg pain that led to mobility issues and a subsequent diagnosis of a malignant tumour. When he could no longer manage at home, Luigi was transferred to Westgate Healthcare’s Hampden Hall Care Centre in Aylesbury for palliative care.

Addressing Holistic Needs

Luigi’s care required addressing multiple dimensions of his well-being:

• Spiritual: Helping him find what is most important in life, offering opportunities for reflection and seeking forgiveness.
• Mental: Alleviating worries about his property and finances, and conflicts with friends and family.
• Physical: Managing symptoms and pain, and coordinating comprehensive care.
Emotional: Supporting him through feelings of loss, fear, anxiety, sadness, and anger.

Jo Massey, Hampden Hall Pine Unit Manager comments: “I am humbled by Luigi’s story. He is truly inspirational in the way he has coped with the challenges that life has placed in his path. Supporting Luigi and all our residents continues to be a privilege, reinforcing why I became a nurse and why I still find this profession worthwhile and fulfilling.”

Hampden Hall Home Manager, Juliana Mensah, comments: “I am incredibly proud of the team at Hampden Hall. Luigi’s journey with us showcases the care and skills of our team, and their continuous efforts to improve outcomes for our residents.”

The Benefits of Holistic Care in Nursing

Taking a holistic approach to nursing is essential, as it requires us to respect and value cultural awareness, individual needs, and personal preferences. This approach promotes emotional healing, personalised care, and ultimately contributes to the well-being of residents. It connects the physical aspects of health to emotional, psychological, and social well-being, providing all-encompassing care for our residents.

Building Trust and Therapeutic Relationships

Upon admission into Hampden Hall Care Centre, Luigi faced numerous challenges. He experienced discomfort from a catheter, immobility due to foot pain, and significant emotional distress from being suddenly uprooted from his home. Additionally, he was grappling with a poor prognosis and the loss of his ability to take care of himself, while friends and family were trying to help organise his personal affairs. Our team addressed these issues comprehensively:

Physical Care: The catheter was removed according to Luigi’s preferences, and his pain was managed with appropriate medication. With the help of caregivers, he regained some mobility, using a Zimmer frame for short distances.
Emotional and Mental Support: Our team helped Luigi take control of his finances and future wishes. A social worker advised on appointing a power of attorney, and we welcomed his friends and family as part of his support network. An independent advocate was applied to assist with his final wishes.
• Spiritual Closure: Understanding the importance of his garden and possessions, the team arranged for Luigi to return home to say goodbye and collect cherished items. Luigi brought cuttings from his favourite shrubs to grow on his windowsill, providing a comforting connection to his past.

Promoting Wellness Through Person-Centred Care

Our team at Westgate Healthcare ensured that Luigi could maintain his passions and connections:

• Community Engagement: He was enabled to visit town, meet friends, and enjoy meals out, maintaining his social connections.
• Sharing Talents: Luigi shared his love for music with other residents, enriching the community with his talent.
• Gardening: By growing cuttings from his garden, we brought a piece of his home to his new environment.

Luigi says: “I feel like I have been healed. I seem to be able to play my violin, mandolin, and accordion a little better. I used to garden for my friend and hadn’t been able to for a while, but now I’m back doing some gardening, which I never thought would happen.”

Best Practices

We are truly honoured to have played a part in Luigi’s journey, providing the personalised care that transformed his transition from home to nursing care into a positive experience. Now, as he thrives in his new home at Hampden Hall, his health and mobility have seen remarkable improvements.

Sharing in the lives of our residents is a profound privilege. By embracing a holistic approach that is resident-centred and built on interdisciplinary teamwork, we foster an environment of engagement, empowerment, and trust. This approach ensures our residents lead fulfilling, dignified lives and, when applied in palliative care, can help improve comfort and quality of life during the final stages.

Furthermore, for our dedicated carers, this experience not only brings deep personal reward in their working lives but also offers a path to personal and existential growth.

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