Highland Hospice is delighted to have received a very thoughtful donation from Joy Gillies MBE, whose husband Neil sadly passed away in November 2013.
Joy, from Inverness, chose to purchase four iPads, which are about to be used more frequently by Highland Hospice with the establishment of a Virtual Hospice which aims to assist patients and family members in communities further away from Inverness.
Currently patients in these areas are supported through the Hospice’s Outreach Day Hospice service, through hospital and home visits or by delivering telephone advice to healthcare professionals.
The development of Virtual Hospice will take this to a new level, providing services with the aid of modern communications technology. For example, Highland Hospice’s physiotherapist will link into the home via Skype to be ‘present’ to motivate patients to undertake their exercises, while nursing staff on duty at night in the Hospice’s In Patient Unit in Inverness will be available to comfort patients having difficulty sleeping because of anxiety caused by their illness, in the same way they do with patients in the Unit.
These and similar developments will make a substantial difference to local patient care. Technology will also mean that patients will be able to keep in contact with family members via Skype and social media, and avoid feeling isolated.
Joy said, “My Husband Neil would have been delighted that a donation to Highland Hospice in his name could be used to purchase four iPads. He never got to grips with a computer and took early retirement as a GP when the computer age arrived. However the iPad was quite another matter and he loved its simplicity and ease of use.”
“Neil was a very caring doctor, husband, family member and friend. He appreciated the need to keep in very close contact with loved ones and we regularly Skyped with our nephew in Canada using the iPad. He was always amazed at the clarity of both sound and vision.
“I understand that Highland Hospice intend to use the iPads to introduce a Virtual Hospice project which will ease contact between patients and staff and between patients and their relatives when direct contact is difficult. This is an inspirational idea and one that should help considerably in the care of patients and their families.”
“I would like to thank all of my friends and family members whose kindness at Neil’s funeral made this donation possible.”
Highland Hospice’s Fundraiser Marie-Anne Vrac, who received the donation, said, “We are extremely grateful to Joy for supporting the Hospice’s future plans in this way and would like to thank her wholeheartedly for her kind donation.”