Chronic illness in Spain

An elderly British woman, suffering from a rare form of tissue cancer, had been admitted to a nursing home in Spain, where she was living. Her daughter was keen to repatriate her to a nursing home in the UK for ongoing care, and asked CT Assitance, for help.

Challenge:

The challenge The patient was frail and had difficulty walking, with the added complication of a fractured pelvis. Unable to eat solid food, she depended on specialist liquid meals, but was struggling to maintain a healthy weight. In addition, her daughter wanted to delay her repatriation for a few months, hoping that her health would improve. But, without expert care, easy communication and the support of close family in Spain, there was a real risk that the woman’s condition could deteriorate even further. To add to this, the repatriation would need to dovetail perfectly with the availability of a bed at the receiving nursing home in the UK.

Solution:

GA’s in-house doctors and Spanishspeaking case manager discussed the patient’s condition and repatriation options at length with her daughter and the nursing home in Spain; providing translation services to ease communication between the two. It wasn’t long before they had established that an early repatriation would be in the best interests of both the patient and her family members in the U.K. Soon, an air ambulance, road ambulances and a full intensive care medical team were ready and waiting to transport the woman by stretcher from her bed in Spain all the way to her new bed in the UK nursing home. And the receiving team in the UK was fully briefed on her needs.

Meanwhile, CEGA’s dedicated case manager supported the patient and her daughter daily; ensuring that a bed in the UK was secured before the repatriation was confirmed, that the smallest details of the journey were explained and that the elderly woman’s every need was met. He even made sure that supplies of specialist food were transported with the patient to the nursing home, and that her daughter was waiting at her bedside when she arrived.

Outcome:

“I wouldn’t have been able to navigate my way through without Colin and the team, so I’d like to thank them for showing me a wealth of compassion,” wrote the patient’s daughter to CEGA after the successful repatriation. “Colin made sure every minute detail of the repatriation was documented and showed great patience and resilience when dealing with the Spanish nursing home. According to Mum it was a sleek transition from aircraft to ambulance to nursing home. She even shook the medic’s hands, not something I’ve known her to do before. She has gone from strength to strength in just a few short days. Without CEGA, I don’t think this could have been possible.”

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