Home News How The Kirkwood has cared for Ken and made his life better

28 May 2024 Community

How The Kirkwood has cared for Ken and made his life better

The Kirkwood is proud to have a number of services that we offer people across Kirklees. We look to care for anyone with a life limiting illness, including those that suffer with heart disease, cancer and COPD as well as all other types of life limiting illnesses. Our specialist palliative care team goes into people's homes every day to give people the care they need. 

One patient that has received on-going care is Ken Davis, 70, from Mirfield. Originally from Ludlow in the midlands, Ken moved to Yorkshire several years ago. Since the age of 31, Ken has had to deal with occupational asthma after working in a flower mill. Since then his condition has deteriorated to the point where he needs the help of an oxygen mask to help him breathe at points throughout the day. He has since been diagnosed as having COPD. Having been married for over 40 years and despite his illness, Ken continues to have a positive outlook on life. 

The Kirkwood came into his life three years ago and has supported and cared for him since then. Ken is grateful for the love and care that has been shown towards him. 

On his illness and how The Kirkwood have cared for him, he said: “Down the years I had heard about The Kirkwood. My preconception of the charity was that it is a building where you go to die and that was it. However since I have been receiving care from The Kirkwood I have now found out The charity is much more than that. 

“I suffer from really bad COPD which is known as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Unfortunately I'm more likely to pick up infections, I've had pneumonia and COVID-19 twice. When I had COVID-19 it hit me hard. Every time you get these infections they leave a scar and damage my lungs more.

“In 2018 I had a really bad attack and was in hospital for 15 days. In that period I should have died but didn't, my blood gasses were so bad that the doctors couldn't believe I was still alive, at that point I was given 12 months to live, however six years later I'm still here. One of the things I can put it down to is that I was very physically fit and strong when I was younger and so I think that's helped my body to keep going at this point. 

“I can't move very far and I'm mostly housebound now, however The Kirkwood have helped me regarding my pain management. I'm on medication which is controlled.” 

Ken is particularly thankful to one nurse called Leanne who he has struck up a great relationship with. 

He said: “Leanne has been amazing, she is just a wonderful person who has helped me so much and I can't thank her enough. Knowing Leanne is there makes me feel more comfortable, it makes me less anxious and more relaxed, especially if I'm struggling. Leanne has said that she will call me in a few months to see how I'm doing, now we have got the medication right. I'm looking forward to our next chat.” 

Finally Ken believes The Kirkwood is so important to the Kirklees community. He believes everyone should know about the services we provide. 

He passionately commented: “The Kirkwood is a fantastic charity, they do so much for us as a community. I admit that my thought process about The Kirkwood was wrong, I just thought it was a hospice and if I went in there it spelt the end of my days. However that isn't true, OK I haven't gone to the site at Dalton but the care Leanne has given me has made me view The Kirkwood in a different light. 

“I truly believe whether you are an old person or a young person, everyone should know what The Kirkwood does, you never know when you'll need their help and support.” 

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