When illness shortens one’s days of life, palliative care, through its doctors, nurses, psychologists, health care workers and volunteers, seeks to bring life to those days.
The project, Vita ai giorni, was born out of the active role that the Pallium of Lodi Association, together with the Il Samaritano of Codogno Association, has been developing for years in support of patients and their family members who need assistance in the end-of-life journey. In recent years, health care workers and volunteers have been alongside over 5,000 families in the Lodi area, assisting thousands of men and women, the elderly and the young, in the last phase of their lives, guaranteeing dignity and respect of the person.
Through a story consisting of images and testimonies, the project aims to raise awareness around the complex theme of palliative care, unfortunately still not well understood. The word “palliative” comes from the Latin “pallium”, which means mantle or protection. The adjective therefore indicates a system of care that, like a cloak, envelops, protects and takes care of the patient and their family. It therefore refers to a set of treatments not merely pharmacological, but multidisciplinary, including psychological and social support, spiritual aspects, and complementary therapies, whose purpose is not to heal, but to alleviate the patient’s suffering and enhance the quality of their last days of life, trying to give life to these days.
Health care workers and volunteers from associations operating in the area, together with photographers from the PhotoAid agency entered the Hospice of Casalpusterlengo and in the private homes of patients who receive home care in order to tell and give witness not only the pain, suffering and fears, but also to the dignity, courage and unexpected resources that can emerge even during the final piece of a family’s history.
This project was carried out thanks to the contribution of the Banca Popolare of Lodi Foundation.