Bostander, who is paralysed on the right side of her body lives, lives with her disabled husband in a one-room shack. She said that since the ambulance brought her home two weeks ago when she was released from hospital, she has received no more visits, support or services from either the local clinic or the hospice.
“It’s frustrating not to be able to do something for yourself, and also to see how my husband must struggle to help me. He sometimes must struggle at night to get me to our outside bucket toilet and to clean my catheter,” said Bostander.
Lizle Thomson from the National Stroke Association said: “Caregivers and family members play a prominent role throughout the post-stroke recovery process. They are essential to successful home care.”
Bostander, however, can only rely on the little help and support that her disabled husband can provide. However, Bostander’s neighbor Cashandra Karelse has come to the family’s assistance.
Karelse said: “We have tried several times to get the nurses and hospice to come to Sina, but we’ve had no luck. We also reported the case to the community development worker, but that’s also been a dead end.”
Robert Schor, president of the Stroke Help Association said: “All stroke survivors have some degree of loss of function. There is a lot of opinion that the stress of taking care of an invalid or disabled person takes ten years off the life of the caretaker. So there is triple deadliness in the disease: it kills, cripples the life of the victim that survives, and it shortens the life of the caretaker.”
OurHealth couldn’t get an interview with local clinic, but Hospice manager Sistertjie Lott, promised to see personally to it that Bostander would get the care that she needed.