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One family's story of care from Herriot Hospice Homecare

This week (May 10-16) marks national Dying Matters Awareness Week, led by Dying Matters and Hospice UK. This year’s campaign focuses on the importance of being #InAGoodPlace to die, following a year like never before. #DMAW21


Graeme Allen’s ‘mam’ Val was diagnosed with secondary bone cancer in spring 2019, and after being given less than a year to live, sadly died at home in January 2020. Here, he shares his family’s experience of our care.


“Mam was diagnosed in April 2019 and started to deteriorate before Christmas. We knew then that she didn’t have long left to live.”


Herriot Hospice Homecare cared for mum-of-two Val, 70, in the last days of her life at her home in Bedale, providing personalised care after she was referred to the service.


“Mam’s care needs became too much for Dad and my sister, and she was referred by district nurses to Herriot for care at home. We hadn’t heard of Herriot before, but the service was vital to fulfil mam’s wishes.


“It was really important for mam to receive care at home, as that’s what she wanted and had been adamant about following her diagnosis.


“Mam really didn’t like hospitals, but she was brave and faced her fears for treatment, but the place she wanted to die in was at home.”


Graeme added: “Mam was a proud person, who liked to be clean and smart, and the expert personal end of life care that Herriot provided to her in the last days of her life was gentle and made sure she was clean and comfortable – just as she would have wanted.”


Graeme and his family are now thanking our healthcare assistants who visited and cared for Val, who was also a grandmother to four. He said: “My dad, sister and I, as well as our wider family, owe a huge sense of gratitude to Herriot Hospice Homecare and its staff. We could not have looked after mam and made sure her wishes were honoured without Herriot’s care and support.


“Herriot Hospice Homecare and its staff are worth their weight in gold. They were there for mam when she needed them most.”

Blog Posted 11th May 2021

Terms and Conditions:

North Yorkshire Hospice Care is a registered charity in England and Wales (518905) with a family of services operating as Herriot Hospice Homecare, Just 'B', Saint Michael's Hospice and Talking Spaces.

North Yorkshire Hospice Care is a company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales (2121179). Registered address Crimple House, Hornbeam Park Avenue, Harrogate, HG2 8NA.