Romanian Visit

Romanian visit

Posted on 19 July 2016 by Monika Reichelt

Four of our staff recently spent a week working in Bucharest and Brasov, thanks to some generous grant funding from Romania.  Mandy Oszczypala our day services team leader and Heather Hardie one of our physiotherapists, along with Rhonda Gilfillan and Alison Barr, both staff nurses from our in-patient unit, provided advice and support to the Hospice Casa Sperantei team in Bucharest as they set up their service in a new build, with many newly appointed clinical staff. 

Throughout the week we all worked closely with our Romanian colleagues, learning how they carry out the same jobs as we do in Ayrshire.  It was interesting to see how their services are so similar to ours but how they can also be so different. Rhonda and Alison spent their week in the in-patient unit and with the home care team, while Heather worked with the physiotherapist and Mandy the day services team. The hospice is modern and well-staffed with enthusiastic staff who were keen to learn a bit more about our different approaches to palliative care. We appreciated that our country’s infrastructure, medications, funding and speciality roles allows us to carry out treatments with a focus and depth that is not often afforded to our Romanian colleagues. We hoped that they were able to take on some of our guidance and adapt it to their own needs and circumstances..

Mandy had the opportunity to give a talk about “Palliative Care in Scotland : A Vision for 2020” at the 14th National Conference & the 3rd International Conference of the Romanian Order for Registered Nurses, Midwives & Medical assistants in Brasov. The talk was listened to intently and if it helps just one member of the 500 strong audience to realise that palliative care is more than just end of life care, the impact on patient care could be significant.

Working alongside colleagues in Romania provided fantastic opportunities for shared learning, service improvement and co-operation between our hospice services, and for all the individuals involved.   It was re-affirming to us that our service in Ayrshire is of an exceptional standard. We are proud and grateful that we are able to supply our services free to people regardless of their circumstances. Our experience in Romania has created a friendship that we are hopeful will be beneficial to both hospices for the future.