Well I guess the easy answer is you wouldn’t UNLESS you had experienced first hand as a GBS survivor or as an observing Carer or family member the dramatic impact on a patient who is lying in a Hospital bed suffering from some dreadful unknown disease that has arrived from nowhere and has rendered you helpless – and quite often in pain – from meeting someone beside your hospital bed who is saying – don’t give up – I have been just where you are and look at me now.
It sounds trite, but it is a fact. The giving of hope – of the assurance that there is light at the end of what seems a very long dark tunnel and that – with a bit of luck – the chances of you making a good recovery are actually pretty high can be a lifeline to a patient struck down by this devastating Syndrome.
For many of us who do volunteer it called “PAYBACK” the giving back to the Support Group for the help and support we received in those dark days following GBS or CIDP’s arrival.
Its not a job for everyone but with proper training, advice and support – which the Group provides – it can be the most rewarding of efforts.
Usually you will only be asked to help those new patients in your immediate area – more often than not by visiting them in Hospital – but occasionally in their homes or talking to them on the telephone. Calls are infrequent – perhaps 2 or 3 times a year and usually a visit will last under an hour – our training will explain why!
So, if you would like to give it a try contact the Secretary and he will send you the appropriate documentation that will start you on the road to becoming one of the most important assets that the Support Group has – an Authorised Hospital Visitor.