This article first appeared in Healthcare Asia.
In conjunction with World Cancer Day last week, a cancer care provider with Homage Malaysia, a reliable and award-winning home care solutions provider, has shared insightful advice and explained some basic services and procedures offered for patients and family who need them in the comfort of home.
According to the Health Ministry, almost 60% of cancer cases in Malaysia are detected too late, sadly reducing the survival rate of the patient.
A cancer diagnosis is extremely overwhelming for the patient and their family: besides going through turmoil before accepting their diagnosis, getting the right treatment and necessary care is equally nerve-wracking.
At the same time, providing care to cancer patients is no easy feat, as responsibilities range from the physical to the emotional. However, in recent times especially with the COVID-19 pandemic, there is a growing trend of caring for cancer patients in their own home amongst family – Care Professionals under Homage Malaysia are duly engaged for their home care services for cancer patients, including post-hospitalisation care.
Companionship and engagement is another vital area where home care lends its support. Through conversations and interactions with these Care Professionals, loneliness is kept at bay and care recipients’ minds and bodies are receptive to physical exercises and mind games that will help their recovery.
Primary caregivers who are unable to care for their loved ones due to work commitments or when they would like to have a respite from caregivingalso reach out for support from Care Professionals.
“Let the patient know that their loved ones trust you,” said Rohani binti Ghazali, a trained and certified Care Professional with Homage Malaysia. It is also important to ensure utmost comfort to the patient – relieve them of their worry and make them smile; make the patient feel that you are giving all your attention on his/her needs – these things may seem simple but it is important to constantly remind them and give them the assurance that their comfort is your utmost priority.
Through showcasing expert skill to handle and manage home care needs including tricky mobility requirements, emotional challenges, and meal preparation Care Professionals like Rohani have overcome the stereotype surrounding getting help for caregiving.
“If everyone can “see” that they need not be alone in caring for their sick family members; that besides medicine and medical care, a supportive environment with clear understanding of the individual’s medical condition can go a long way to ensure ease and comfort,” said Rohani.
Despite all this, losing a patient to cancer is devastating, as caregivers tend to form a bond with the patient. “I learnt that it is okay, because we also gain comfort each and every time we are by the patient’s side,” admitted Rohani.“Try to make the patient happy and provide positive interaction; always smile and help the patient in whatever way possible to lessen his/her worries.”
Homage Malaysia combines services from curated and trained care professionals with smart technology to manage and provide on-demand holistic home and community-based caregiving to seniors and adults, allowing them to age and recover at home with grace, control and dignity.
With the Homage app for Care Owners (family members and loved ones), families can request care easily wherever and whenever, while Care Professionals like Rohani can easily apply for care visits, filter visits to their convenience, and view specific care services required.
Details of the visit and profiles of the Care Professional assigned will be visible through the app to the family as well. During visits, family members are able to get real-time updates on the care visits and how their loved ones are doing through the chat function in the app; they will also receive a detailed visit summary each time.
Most importantly, care for patients is not skimped on during the pandemic – Rohani explained that consistent sanitising and conscientious safety practices are enforced before and after touching patients and medical equipment.
“I always remind myself and others around me so that everybody can be safe.”