East Devon Day Hospice: Providing ‘invaluable services’ to patients

PUBLISHED: 09:00 18 May 2014

Complementary therapist Sally Sweet.

Complementary therapist Sally Sweet.

Archant

The new East Devon Day Hospice will provide invaluable services to Hospiscare patients across the region, offering access to palliative care specialists, assisted bathing, freshly cooked meals and complementary therapies.

Local charity Hospiscare uses complementary therapies to help relieve stress and tension, aid relaxation and promote a sense of wellbeing, which are offered to patients and carers at home and at the charity’s day hospices and in-patient unit. This service will also be available at the new day hospice at King Street, Honiton, when the doors open in summer 2014.

Complementary therapist Sally Sweet works at the Exeter hospice, as well as visiting people across Sidmouth, Beer, Honiton and Axminster, to bring aromatherapy, reflexology, Indian head massage, reiki and relaxation techniques to patients and carers.

She said: “We shouldn’t underestimate the benefits a feeling of being pampered offers - especially to carers who are often stressed and tired after looking after a loved one.

“Increased relaxation can help patients with symptoms such as fatigue, pain, nausea and insomnia.

“Additionally, we teach people relaxation techniques to combat things like breathlessness, anxiety and panic attacks.”

A new complementary therapy room will be housed in the day hospice. Sally added: “The new day hospice will make it easier for patients and carers to receive complementary therapies as we can offer appointments to those who can visit us there. This is not currently practical if patients have to travel to one of our other centres.

“We would envisage offering more appointments as therapists will be able to see more patients if they don’t have to travel between appointments.”

Thirty people across Exeter, Mid and East Devon currently volunteer their time to provide complementary therapies to patients and carers.

With many professional benefits to be gained from volunteering, Sally said that Hospiscare is actively looking for more people to help provide this important service.

The 49-year-old added: “Our therapists choose whether they wish to work in our day care centres in Exeter, Tiverton or Seaton, or the in-patient unit in Exeter.

“Some of our volunteer therapists help us by visiting patients and carers at home.

“This helps our paid therapists cover our wide geographical area, while volunteers gain experience of working with this vulnerable patient group in a safe and structured way.”

For more information about volunteering, call 01392 688000 or to find out more about the appeal, visit www.eastdevondayhospiceappeal.co.uk.

Future events:

The Sheldon Singers will be performing at St Paul’s Church, Honiton, on Saturday, May 17, at 7.30pm until 9.30pm. There will be a collection in sup-port of the East Devon Day Hospice Appeal.

Stockland Fair on Mon-day, May 26, at Stockland Victory Hall. This year’s event will be supporting the Hospiscare appeal.

Lunch at the Deer Park Country Hotel on June 12, from 11am until 2pm. The hotel in Weston, near Honiton, is offering a special lunch in support of the East Devon appeal. Two people can enjoy two course for £25 as well as a tour of the grounds.

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