In her final weeks, when my father could no longer cope, my mother was looked after at home by community nurses. She was 87, deaf, frustrated with her life and extremely scared.
She spent the last two weeks of her life in a semi-comatose state, screaming with frustration and fear whenever she regained a measure of consciousness.
Without the care and support of that team of community nurses, I could not have coped. They did their best to ease my mother's desperate parting and comforted my father and I. Two of them attended the funeral and one joined us on a charity walk.
They were not saints, just nurses doing an invaluable job with no fees attached. The health service here is far from perfect, but let us not forget how much we owe to the many overworked, dedicated people who help us in our hour of need.
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