Tuesday, June 8, 2010
You may be familiar with the name Weston Hospicecare, but how much do you really know about your local Hospice?
You may have some idea what goes on at its base at Jackson-Barstow House in Uphill, but unless youve been there and seen at first-hand what its really like, there are a few things you might not know...
The vast majority of Weston Hospicecares patients, about 80 per cent, are treated in their own homes, by a team of dedicated and highly skilled community nurse specialists.
Half of all the patients who are admitted to the 10-bed in-patient unit are eventually well enough to be discharged and sent home.
Weston Hospicecare looks after adults of all ages, from 18 to 80 and beyond.
Each year about 1,000 people in Weston and the surrounding areas receive free palliative care, and support for their families.
In 2008 the Hospice's community palliative care team cared for 750 patients, made 5,600 face-to-face visits and 2,865 telephone calls to patients.
This year, the hospice is expecting to care for an extra 100 to 150 new patients in the community.
The Hospice building is in Uphill, but the catchment area for patients stretches from Yatton and Congresbury in the north, to Burnham-on-Sea and Cheddar in the south.
The hospice started in October 1989 in a room in a church with just one nurse and a group of willing volunteers.
The majority of patients at Weston Hospicecare have some form of cancer, but the Hospice supports people with any life-limiting illness.
It costs 600 for us to buy enough medicine to keep all the patients in the in-patient unit comfortable and free of pain for a month.
It costs 60 per patient per day for us to deliver care and support in the day hospice, although it is provided free to the patient.
Every year, more than a thousand women raise money for the Hospice by taking to the beach at Weston-super-Mare for the Midnight Beach Walk.
The majority of our funding comes from people making donations, leaving legacies, shopping at the Weston Hospicecare shops, and attending fund-raising events.
Weddings, blessings, birthday parities and christenings are just some of the events to have been held at the Hospice.
The Hospice is supported by a team of more than 500 volunteers working in the day hospice, on reception, in the kitchen and garden, in the charity shops and community groups, and as drivers.
For the past four years, the Hospice has been home to a family of wild ducks, which are looked after by the staff.
The Hospice is not a religious organisation, but there is a full-time Chaplain and the chapel welcomes worshippers of all faiths and denominations.
Complementary therapies are also available at the day hospice include massage, aromatherapy, reflexology and Indian head massage.
Weston Hospicecare offers bereavement counselling to relatives of all ages, and we work with a number of schools to provide safe and reassuring environments for children during difficult times.
Jackson-Barstow House is named after Miss Enid Sybil Jackson-Barstow, who left a sizable legacy to Weston Hospicecare when she died, giving it the funds to move into its current premises.