ECHO has partnered with Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity to provide a Cardiac Support Worker, an experienced professional who offers full-time support to ECHO families. Our Cardiac Support Worker ensures that families with children who have complex heart conditions and additional needs receive the emotional and practical support they need.
This type of support bridges the gap between the medical care that families receive in hospital and the social care they receive in the home or community.
Your Cardiac Support Worker can offer
Someone to talk to during and after your stay at Evelina London Children’s Hospital
Support during difficult medical appointments, emotional support for siblings, and bereavement support for the whole family.
Respite – spending time with your child both at hospital and at home, so that you can take some time for yourself
Hospital support – support you whilst you’re in hospital, attending appointments with you and being there to talk to when needed
Transport – helping you with transport to and from the hospital
Social events – keeping you updated with regular social and educational events, providing the opportunity to meet other families through the ECHO and Rainbow Trust networks.
Once you’ve joined ECHO and the Cardiac Support Worker has received your referral, we’ll contact you to arrange an assessment visit. This can take place in the hospital, at home, or wherever’s convenient. Support will begin after the assessment is completed. We aim for the service to be responsive to you and your family’s individual needs.
Sometimes I provide emotional support to stressed and exhausted parents, or spend hours playing with young siblings in need of company, and sometimes I simply change nappies, take them shopping or have a cup of tea together. I adapt to each situation, which is what I am there to do.