Last Thursday Apple House care homes’ Director of Operations, Romaine Lawson, was proud to attend the offices of Care England in London to participate in the inaugural meeting of a steering group headed up by John’s Campaign.
John’s Campaign was founded by Julia Jones, daughter of June who lived with Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia, and Nicci Gerrard, daughter of Alzheimer’s sufferer Doctor John Gerrard who sadly passed in 2014 after a prolonged hospital admission. Doctor Gerrard’s health deteriorated during a five week hospital stay during which time he was detached from the care and support of family members by a system that did not historically facilitate such external input into daily hospital routines.
From this experience Nicci and Julia founded John’s Campaign, with the hope that family and carer support could and should be accepted and welcomed in the hospital setting. The Campaign has taken off exponentially, with TV coverage, MP support, and over a thousand wards, hospitals and other environments pledging their support.
‘We need to embrace a new era of of family-centred care in which family carers are treated as equals in the delivery of care.’ — The Benefits and Drawbacks of Open Visiting, Nursing Times, November 2018.
On seeing John’s Campaign on social media, Apple House care homes reached out to Julia and were delighted to pledge our support. It was clear to us that family involvement was key to underpinning the wellbeing of individuals we support.
The archaic practice of restricted visiting has never been an ethos we have condoned or participated in. Family members and loved ones are an extension of us just as we are an extension of them. Together with the individual we collectively form a team, a family, a group co-working towards a common goal: support and care underpinned by a sound knowledge base garnered not from one source or from paperwork, but via a deep and thorough understanding of an individual’s network of family and friends and, most importantly, what matters to them in their life. What makes them ‘them.’ What their hopes and aspirations are, their fears, their interests and so many other threads of their life which simply cannot be gathered together in isolation.
‘There are good reasons to support the notion that friends and family play a huge role in the person’s emotional wellbeing.’ –From Families as ‘Visitors’ to Families as Partners, Dokken DL et al, 2015.
To this end, Romaine spoke at the steering group and you can listen to what she said by clicking the YouTube link in this post.
— Jane Montrose, Managing Director, Apple House Ltd.