Pain care equipment in memory of Raunds dad to help other patients

Tony Lewis died from pancreatic cancer in July 2020, aged 79,
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The family of a Raunds man who died from cancer have donated pain relief equipment to district nurses in north Northamptonshire after a collaboration between health providers and a charity.

Father-of-two Tony Lewis was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in November 2019 and died just six months later - widow Linda asking for donations in his name.

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Now his family have presented a syringe pump (driver) to help palliative care patients manage their symptoms using a small portable battery-operated device that pushes a syringe to give medication slowly over 24 hours.

L-r Louise Nicholls, Laura Clifford, Linda Lewis, Lee Nicholls and Donna LewisL-r Louise Nicholls, Laura Clifford, Linda Lewis, Lee Nicholls and Donna Lewis
L-r Louise Nicholls, Laura Clifford, Linda Lewis, Lee Nicholls and Donna Lewis

Working with Cambridgeshire-based charity No Gain No Pain (NGNPUK), it is hoped that the donation will be the first of many syringe pumps that the group will deliver to help Northamptonshire residents.

Lee Nicholls, NGNPUK co-founder, said: “These syringe drivers make such a difference and we want people to have the option for one, without waiting. We want to see if we can help people in Northants.

"Hopefully it will be the first of many. We have already donated 115 in the Peterborough area. It helps the person and it helps the family - it helps so many.

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"Now we have been brought together with the district nurses by Linda and Donna we want to help people in Northamptonshire."

The syringe pump (sometimes referred to as a syringe driver) is an essential piece of equipment required to safely manage a patients symptoms at home enabling patients to be looked after in their preferred place of care. It is a simpler and more comfortable way to receive medication for people who would otherwise need repeated injections.

NGNPUK provides syringe drivers to community nurses giving them the tools to support the patients and their families choice to remain at home.

The charity raises awareness and campaigns about the importance of the devices, attending groups and gatherings and through fundraising within communities.

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Lee said: "Through this we hopefully help to reduce the risk of loss or damage to the drivers and ensure they are returned back to the NHS. One useful tool is feedback from the community nurses and patients families. We have compiled an anonymous feedback book that brings home the impact that these drivers have when in use.

"We’re a small charity run by just three of us, but to date we’ve now delivered 114 syringe drivers into Cambridgeshire and with the help of Linda and Donna we’ve now managed to deliver our first to NHFT, as we’re looking to expand into Northamptonshire."

Tony's daughter Donna said: "It's nice to see it finally here. I had another friend who also died from pancreatic cancer and we were in contact with NGNPUK. They really helped with the syringe driver. It made sure that he could stay at home."

The syringe pump will be used by the community nurses in the district team, part of Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (NHFT).

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Laura Clifford, Community Matron at NHFT, said: “We are incredibly grateful to Linda for her amazing fundraising efforts and to No Gain No Pain UK for the donation of syringe drivers.

"This will enable our district nurses to provide quality care to their patient and our communities, ensuring their symptoms are managed while maintaining their comfort.”

Linda said: "It was lucky that Tony had a syringe driver. Now thanks to donations another patient will benefit."