Families of Walsall patients receiving end-of-life care are to receive support packs to help them at a difficult time.
Walsall Healthcare’s Well Wishers charity has funded the comfort packs for relatives of those receiving palliative care.
Currently, there are blossom boxes on the ward for patients which aim to improve and standardise end of life and bereavement care (read more about this here: https://bit.ly/3t5oWgQ).
Staff wanted to do something for the families/carers of these patients who have been spending many hours at their loved ones’ bedside which is how the idea of the packs came about.
- An exemption car parking permit
- Open visiting on the ward including overnight visiting
- Keepsakes in organza bags
- Support with spiritual and religious care needs
- Creating memories such as handprints and hand photography
- Toiletries – toothbrushes, deodorant wipes, facial wipes, eye masks and other comforting items
Eleanor Mills is the End-of-Life Specialist Nurse Practitioner at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust. She works with the Acute Palliative Care Team.
Her job entails seeing patients who are in their last hours/days of life. In end-of-life care there is ‘one chance to get it right’ and she spends a lot of time supporting and educating ward staff.
She said: “End-of-life care involves giving patients their wants and wishes and ensuring comfort, dignity and respect are priority. We care for them in their final hours.
“We also spend lots of time with relatives and loved ones of dying patients, providing emotional support.
“We wanted to create these comfort packs for families/carers to show that we are thinking about them during this difficult time and that they are not on their own.
“This also gives us as staff the opportunity to think outside the box. We all know that caring for a loved one is important, and in turn we can make sure relatives and carers are looked after too. Small things go a long way.”
She added: “The packs were kindly donated by Well Wishers who also support all of the items supplied in the blossom box and Georgie from the Fundraising Team is always open to new ideas and happy to fund the resources.”
Georgie Westley, Fundraising Manager said: “We are so honoured that we get to support and make a difference to our end-of-life patients and their families in some way. We know what an important time this is for everyone, so we are more than happy to fund these resources so that our staff can provide the best care possible.”