Nurses' Merit Award 2017 recipient - Long Kiew Joon, Nurse Clinician, Assisi Hospice
“I joined nursing as I had always wanted to work in a meaningful profession. By working in palliative care for 17 years, I have experienced different areas, such as day care, home care and inpatient, enabling me to appreciate and understand the differences in patient care needs.
One of my most memorable patients was Mr Tan, a middle-aged gentleman who was diagnosed with metastatic colon cancer. He was referred to our home care team for symptom control and psychological support. When we first visited him, he was in severe pain, very depressed and wished for euthanasia. His wife, who was also his main caregiver, was helpless and found it hard to cope with his illness. However, as Mr Tan’s pain was controlled and his trust in our team grew, he began to open up and share his worries and wishes. He told his wife that he wanted to be cared for by her at home. His wife was apprehensive at first but was willing to take up the challenge with the support from our home care team. He passed away peacefully at home, cared for lovingly by his wife who became a competent caregiver.
By using my skills, knowledge and past experiences, I could empower many patients and their caregivers to step up and take control to change and manage their circumstances. This award motivates me to work towards better patient care and education.”
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