Spring is bringing a sense of optimism at Hospice in the Weald as it welcomes new national developments which introduce a legal right to end of life care for the first time in England.
And locally, the Hospice is also delighted to be opening the doors of its Living Well Centre in Pembury to patients and loved ones in person as COVID restrictions can be eased.
Commenting on the recent national developments, Nick Farthing, permanently appointed as Chief Executive of Hospice in the Weald in January, said: “We believe the very best end of life care is a fundamental right for everyone. So we welcome the recent amendment to the Health and Social Care Bill which means, for the first time, that end of life care will become a legal right in England.
“This means that palliative (end of life) care must now be given the same consideration as other areas of healthcare, and although we are yet to see how this will be commissioned and funded, this development is very encouraging.
“These changes are a big step towards ensuring everyone with terminal illness in England can receive the care they want and need.”
Meanwhile, the Hospice is welcoming patients and families back in-person from today (Monday 14th) to take part in tailored support programmes at its Living Well Centre in Pembury, in addition to the virtual programmes introduced during lockdowns.
Patients living with terminal illness and their loved ones can work with staff and volunteers to develop 12-week programmes and set goals to suit them. Activities range from painting and craft sessions to exercise and relaxation classes.
Stephanie Hall, Head of Living Well, said: “Social contact is important for us all, so it’s fantastic to be seeing patients and their loved ones in person again at Living Well. Our activities and complementary therapies can provide a much-needed escape from hospital appointments. Often patients can feel disempowered or overwhelmed, so we are here to help them process all that is going on in their lives and regain some control.”