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Grandma Luk’s Journey

See how hospice helped bring this matriarch home.

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Grandma Luk’s Journey

Sheung Lung, more affectionately known as Grandma Luk, was born in China. She married, had four children and became a widow far too early in life. Ever resilient, she did the unimaginable and moved with her children to Honduras, opened a restaurant there, and then relocated to Brooklyn, NY.

In the Big Apple, Grandma Luk worked hard to live the American dream: She bought a house and watched her children start their own families. As Grandma Luk aged, her granddaughter Mary, who happens to be a social worker, became her health care proxy. In 2014, Grandma Luk was diagnosed with lung cancer. The family was devastated.      

When aggressive treatment didn’t work, the 88-year-old matriarch, with her family’s support, transitioned to end-of-life care provided by MJHS. At home, Grandma Luk was visited by a board-certified physician, a bilingual (English/Chinese) nurse and social worker, as well as a spiritual care coordinator.

One evening, Grandma Luk had trouble breathing. Her family called 9-1-1. Paramedics intubated her and rushed her to the hospital. She was quickly moved from the hospital to the MJHS Hospice Inpatient Residence—where she received aggressive pain and symptom management. If needed, the residence would provide infusion therapies, ventilator support, bedside procedures and integrative medicine. Grandma Luk’s family was relieved and pleasantly surprised to discover that her hospice nurse is also a native Cantonese-speaker, so talking about everything from daily life to symptom management was easier than expected.

Grandma Luk thrived at the inpatient residence. She participated in the 100th day birthday celebration of her great grandson—a major milestone in many Asian cultures.

With her symptoms managed and stable, Grandma Luk was moved to Menorah Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing Care. At the oceanfront nursing home, she continued to receive hospice services from MJHS.  Eventually, she was stable enough to return home with her granddaughter Mary.

*Sheung Lung Luk received hospice care in her final days, and passed away on October 26, 2015.

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