Chammy's Story - Brain injury awareness week
In support of brain injury awareness week, we spoke to Chammy whose husband has an acquired brain injury.
Eight years ago my husband had an asthma attack and due to several complications, he is now living with an acquired brain injury (ABI). His ABI is severe and has left him unable to communicate and with low awareness. His inability to communicate means that at times it is difficult to determine what he needs but over the years we have become familiar with certain non-verbal signs and know when he needs something.
When he acquired his brain injury, he was transferred between hospitals for almost seven years. This was very unsettling for my husband and our family and with no consistent support it was difficult for my husband to rehabilitate. I petitioned for years to have my husband brought home and eventually my call was heard.
In July 2014, my husband was brought home to be cared for by Pulse Community Healthcare and it has made things so much easier for all of us but in particular his quality of life has significantly improved. Being at home has also meant that we can all go out together as a family whereas this wasn’t the case when he was in hospital because you constantly had to consult doctors and nurses.
I believe that there is a huge lack of understanding of brain injuries and what can cause a brain injury. People tend to assume that my husband was born with his ABI and I imagine that is the assumption made towards others too. No one can believe that my husband’s condition was the result of an asthma attack. There needs to be greater education of what can cause a brain injury so people can protect themselves and their loved ones from all eventualities. If there is more knowledge and understanding of brain injuries then hopefully there can be further investment into preventative measures and how to best support those who have brain injuries. I truly believe that my husband is far better off being at home with continued care as this means his quality of life is as good as it can be and helps keep him as independent as possible.