Wessex Vale Crematorium supports pioneering palliative care suite
A pioneering palliative care suite at University Hospital Southampton has received a £5,000 cash boost from Wessex Vale Crematorium.
The first end-of-life suite to be located within a General Intensive Care Unit in the country provides families with a private room in which they can spend their precious final moments with their loved ones, using interactive technology to personalise the environment.
Wessex Vale Crematorium, which is just outside Southampton, raised the money through its metal recycling scheme.
With the consent of families, metals recovered during cremation are recycled and any money raised is used to support charities and other worthy causes in the communities surrounding each of Westerleigh’s sites.
Westerleigh Group is the UK’s largest independent owner and operator of crematoria and cemeteries, with 35 sites across England, Scotland and Wales, all set within beautifully landscaped gardens of remembrance which provide pleasant, peaceful places for people to visit and reflect.
Lisa Johnson, site manager of Wessex Vale Crematorium, said: “Far from feeling like a normal hospital room, the Palliative Care Suite will feel much more like a bedroom.
“Necessary medical equipment will be stored out of sight and technology will be used to allow patients and families to customise the space, using photos or videos of holidays or other special memories, and speakers will ensure that music can be played.
“The experience of receiving palliative care in a clinical environment can be isolating, with the patient feeling as though they have lost their sense of self. The new suite means that the focus is very much on the person, and their family, rather than the illness.
“We’re proud to be able to support a local facility which will undoubtedly have a huge positive impact, enabling the patient to pass away in a far more personal, private environment which, in turn, will provide some comfort to their loved ones.”
Beth Hall, Head of Fundraising at Southampton Hospitals Charity, said: “We’d like to extend our heartfelt thanks to Wessex Vale Crematorium for donating an incredible amount of money for our Palliative Care Suite.
“We cannot take away the pain of losing a loved one, but this support will ensure we can make the experience as comfortable and personal as possible for those left behind and ensure that our patients have a dignified and good death.”