Cornwall LivingIssue #64

A friendly face

Cornwall Hospice Care launches new Neighbourhood Hubs.

The clinical teams at Cornwall Hospice Care know only too well the issues around living with a terminal illness whether you’re a patient, carer, family member or friend. The Cornish charity is always talking with those who visit its hospices and as a result a new service is being launched this month aimed at helping all these people by offering support in their local communities.

“We aim to build confidence, helping people to live as well as possible.”

The Neighbourhood Hubs will provide care, rehabilitation and support to patients and their carers earlier in their illnesses, help that has to date only been available in the hospices.

Dawn Tame-Battell, the charity’s Director of Patient Services, says: “At the hubs, people will be able to book an appointment to see a wide range of experts including physiotherapists, occupational and complementary therapists, Lymphoedema therapists, counsellors and specialist nurses. A social worker will also be available to help and we can refer people on to our medical staff if necessary. It’ll be very informal, with tea and coffee and a chance to chat.”

Treatments will include management of breathlessness, pain, fatigue, reduced mobility, anxiety and emotional and spiritual issues. “We aim to build confidence, helping people to live as well as possible. We want to provide them with a chance to come and talk and ask questions, to have both their physical and emotional issues addressed, including discussing ‘advanced care planning’ where they can detail how they want to be treated and cared for going forward.” GPs will be referring people to the Hubs, but patients and carers can also self-refer as Dawn explains. “Come along to one of the Neighbourhood Hubs and see what’s on offer. We can then liaise with your GP to ensure we are offering what’s suitable to you.”

The first two Neighbourhood Hubs will be at the John Betjeman Centre in Wadebridge and Clarence House in Penzance, running every Thursday from 12th October onwards (1.30pm to 4.30pm). More Hubs will be announced in the coming months, along with new Open House sessions in smaller community settings where patients and carers can meet for company, support and advice.

The Neighbourhood Hubs, like all of the services provided to terminally ill patients by Cornwall Hospice Care, will be free and funded thanks to the support of the people of Cornwall and those who have left the charity legacies in their wills.

"We aim to build confidence, helping people to live as well as possible."