Life After Stroke
16/05/2014The Southern Health and Social Care Trust has paid tribute to carer Roisin O’Neill from Coalisland and her mother Margaret who were honoured at the recent Life After Stroke Awards 2014 (held recently at the Stormont Hotel, Belfast).
Organised by the Regional NI Stroke Association, Roisin received the ‘Carer of the Year’ award for leaving school at the age of 17 to help her father to look after her seven siblings and mother, after Margaret had a stroke.
Roisin was nominated by her brother Padraig who also collected an ‘Adult Courage’ award for their mum, whose life dramatically changed at the age of 42 when she took the stroke. Now 69, Margaret lives with Roisin and is an inspiration to all of the family.
Roisin says: “In the 27 years since mummy had her stroke, she has only been hospitalised three times. Thanks to the dedication of our late father and the love of family and friends, we have been able to keep her at home where she belongs with us. We also receive Domiciliary Care from the Trust to help us with mum’s personal care each morning and a Direct Payments package to hire a carer to look after mum so I can get out to do messages or have a break when I need it.”
A Community Stroke Service is now also available to support people in their home following a stroke, allowing an earlier discharge from hospital than was previously possible as Roisin Toner, Assistant Director for Enhanced Care for the Southern Trust explains: “We would like to wish our warmest congratulations to Roisin and Margaret for receiving this recognition that they truly deserve.
“Stroke can have a devastating impact on people’s lives affecting their ability to move, eat, speak or carry out simple tasks. We want to improve the quality of care for these people and help them to live as independently as possible without having to spend weeks or sometimes months in hospital.
“Our Community Stroke Service is helping more people like Margaret to recover in their own surroundings close to family and friends. The team of specialist nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, a speech and language therapist and rehabilitation support staff, work with patients following their discharge from hospital.
“The service also works closely with the community and voluntary sectors which offer additional ongoing support, meaning that more people are now regaining more normal lives following a stroke.”
Click here to hear Roisin’s story.
Roisin and Margaret O’Neill who were honoured at the recent ‘Life After Stroke Awards’ with Margaret’s son Padraig who nominated them both.