YouTube lessons in how to care for the seriously ill
Twenty two video lessons have been uploaded onto a YouTube channel. With their help, medical staff and relatives of terminally-ill people will be able to find out how to properly wash, feed and communicate with patients, and ensure they have a facilitative environment.
According to data from the Vera Fund for Hospices, 360-460 per 100,000 of the population are in need in palliative care. When a person loses their independence as a result of their illness, their quality of life – and the quality of life of those close to them – depends largely on those around them.
“In this country we sadly have a catastrophic – and I cannot stress this enough – catastrophic lack of specialists who can professionally – and moreover compassionately and humanely – look after seriously ill patients. Of course, being a carer is not about drugs or following a timetable, it’s loving people at their very weakest and most vulnerable. But there are few who can provide that love,” says Nyuta Federmesser, Director of the Centre for Palliative Medicine of the Moscow Department for Public Health.
“Even those who already work in hospices or in palliative care departments do not have the requisite knowledge and skills. The extent to which a patient feels valued and comforted in the last moments of their life depends on the professionalism and tact of their nurses and carers. And the extent to which those close to them, who are able or not able to provide this tender loving care, will feel burdened by a sense of guilt,” Federmesser emphasised.
The Caring Workshop created by the Vera charitable foundation and the Hospice Care Professionals Association, is made up of a ten day series for care specialists, the majority of which have practical duties. The first full-time session took place in February 2016, led by the Head Doctor of the Novosibirsk Diocese House of Charity Olga Vygovska, but this year the workshop launched its own YouTube channel, allowing them to increase the circle of people able to receive this essential knowledge.
Even nurses working full-time – who use YouTube – can easily learn how to change the position of a patient in bed with the help of a special sliding bedsheet, or to change the sheets without harming the patient or themselves, which, along with pharmaceutical treatment, is essential to prevent thrombosis in sick people; and what kind of character traits nurses and carers need in order to look after a sick person. You can watch all the video-lessons here.