This Hospice Care Week, we’re shining a light on the people who make hospice care what it is.
In the 14 years that Karen has worked in a hospice, she has seen huge leaps forward in attitudes towards hospice care – thanks to the dedication and compassion of the people she works with.
Karen: a Lymphoedema Specialist
Karen Hunt (pictured above, far left, with her colleagues) has been a Lymphoedema Specialist Practitioner at The Myton Hospices since 2009.
Her role involves managing Myton’s Lymphoedema service, which treats patients who have developed lymphoedema secondary to cancer and/or its treatment.
Karen, along with her team, teaches patients how to manage the swelling to feel more confident and comfortable in reducing their symptoms.
Joining the hospice
Before joining Myton, Karen was a Tissue Viability Nurse, completing an extra workplace-supported qualification in lymphoedema training. Already experienced in Leg Lymphoedema, the additional training opened her eyes to other forms of the condition.
At the time, Karen was relocating and was seeking specialist lymphoedema jobs – roles which she says don’t come up very often:
“It was fate that there was a vacancy when I was looking. I had no connection to Myton, but as soon as I walked through the doors for the interview I felt at home. It was, and is, so friendly. It just felt right.”
The informality of the hospice was also a pleasant surprise:
“I’ve never worked at an organisation where I could freely talk to the CEO. At Myton I know I can knock on Ruth’s door and have a cup of tea and a catch up!”
‘The difference we can make is incredible’
Karen sees a wide variety of patients at the Lymphoedema Clinic, from those receiving palliative care to patients who have been treated and are in remission. She reflects on what it is she finds most fulfilling about her work:
“The difference we can make to each and every patient is incredible. No matter whether the change is big or small, it’s so rewarding seeing the patients live happier lives.”
Karen praised her colleagues, who together work tirelessly to improve patients’ lives:
“As a whole, we try to help patients to live a better life, however long that may be. Not just for them but for their families too.
“Everyone does their best for each patient to make the most of their time and feel as if they are supported for as long as they need it.”
Thank you to Karen and The Myton Hospices for sharing her story for Hospice Care Week.
About Hospice Care Week 2023
Hospice Care Week is a chance to celebrate hospice care nationwide, and the incredible work that is being done to make sure everyone can benefit from the very best end of life care. This year we're focusing on workforce, under the theme: ‘We are hospice care’.
Hospices support more than 300,000 people every year. But the need for hospice care is growing. There aren’t enough people to fill the roles we need to look after dying patients and their families. Without people to fill these empty roles, hospices will struggle to keep providing the gold-standard end-of-life care everyone deserves.
That’s why, this Hospice Care Week, we're celebrating everyone that makes hospice care what it is. Read more stories like Karen's, below.
Bridging the gap: the Community Connector on a mission
Surjit’s Story: volunteering in Advance Care Planning
‘It’s like one big family – I love coming in to volunteer at Thames Hospice’
Calley’s Story: why I work at a hospice