Sampson’s cancer struggle herculean

By Ashleigh Fielding | posted on June 4, 2020

THE final journey of life can be an uncomfortable topic for some people, and one Albany family is all too familiar with the issue.

But in recognition of National Palliative Care Week, Yakamia residents Jenny and Greg Sampson have decided to share their story in the hope it will encourage others requiring health assistance at the end of their life to not be scared about asking for help.

Ms Sampson has been fighting cancers as they have torn across her body for 12 years, ever since she was first diagnosed with stage two breast cancer in 2008.

First developing in her breast, a tumour then grew on her chest wall and rib and cracked her rib, leading to further cancers spreading along her sternum, spine and shoulder.

The Sampsons have slowly come to terms with how bad Ms Sampson’s fight for life is at the moment, and heartbreakingly described it to the Weekender as possibly her last fight.

They sought the palliative care assistance of Clarence Estate in October last year and Mr Sampson said one nurse in particular had saved his wife’s life twice.

Mr Sampson didn’t have enough words to praise Clarence Estate’s Allison Bell for her dedication.

“Jenny would be dead if it wasn’t for Allison,” he said.

“I wouldn’t have been able to do any of this on my own … they’ve been brilliant.”

Mr Sampson said when his wife is very ill, Ms Bell or another nurse visits their house up to twice a day.

On a normal week, they visit once per week.

The Clarence Estate palliative care team of six aids Ms Sampson with symptom control and management and clinical assessments.

Ms Bell said the facility had the only community palliative care service with a 24/7 home visit service in the region.

National Palliative Care Week 2020 was held from May 24-30 with the theme, ‘Palliative care, it’s more than you think’.