Karen’s Story

“Covid has cost us so much – but I’m not going anywhere.”

My name is Karen Reilly and I have worked at St Andrew’s Hospice in Airdrie as a Staff Nurse for seven and a half years.

As part of a specialist palliative care team we provide care and support for patients, families and carers who are living with life limiting illnesses. We care for patients with variable needs such as symptom management, rehabilitation and end of life care.

My mum passed away at St Andrew’s Hospice over 12 years ago, so I witnessed the amazing care she received first-hand. She was pain free, appeared brighter and at peace with herself in the last stages of her life. That’s when I knew this was the kind of place I would like to work in.

The disruption caused by COVID-19 has been horrendous and challenging. It was heart-breaking for patients and families having to deal with the visiting restrictions. So, we continued to try and keep their spirits lifted and have good communication techniques in place, such as using iPads for Zoom calls to communicate with each other. And we provided activities and relaxation therapies such as reiki and massages to our patients to help them cope.

Even though the worst of the pandemic may be over, we will continue to wear full PPE every day to protect our patients, families and ourselves. We don’t know what the future holds but myself and my colleagues will continue to provide the best care to keep our patients comfortable and safe.

Karen Reilly
Staff Nurse

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