‘Evergreen’ end-of-life care facility opens in Weymouth
A new palliative care suite for people nearing the end of their lives has opened in Weymouth, thanks to generous donations and fundraising efforts.
The Evergreen Suite is part of the Radipole Ward at Westhaven Hospital and was officially unveiled by the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Dorset, Mr Cleeves Palmer.
Dorset HealthCare has opened the facility to provide a welcoming space where relatives can spend quality time with loved ones who are receiving specialist end-of-life care.
The suite offers round-the-clock medical support and aims to make family members’ last moments together as comfortable as possible.
Hospital Matron Helen De Jonge said: “This facility has been made possible thanks to a very generous donation of £54,000 from our League of Friends.
“Relatives of former patients, and staff, also contributed to the costs, taking part in various fundraising activities to help us reach our total of £68,200. It’s been a fantastic effort by so many people, and I can’t thank them enough.
“The suite is decorated sympathetically with relaxing colours not normally associated with a clinical environment. There is a sofa bed so loved ones can stay overnight, and the room opens out onto our beautiful garden – allowing patients to have their beloved pets to spend time with them too.”
As part of the opening ceremony, the suite received a blessing by Rev. Canon Andrew Gough, retired, formally of Holy Trinity, Weymouth, and there was a speech by Peter Rendall, Chairman of the League of Friends.
The event was attended by staff, volunteers, relatives and local dignitaries including Mayor of Weymouth Cllr Kate Wheller, Mayor of Chickerell Cllr Mike Jolliffe and Mayor of Portland Cllr Carralyn Parkes.