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Musgrove joins with Marie Curie to provide end of life companions to patients - 16 April 2014

Musgrove joins with Marie Curie to provide end of life companions to patients - 16 April 2014

Musgrove Park Hospital has joined up with Marie Curie Cancer Care to develop and pilot a Companion Volunteer programme to provide support for patients in the last days or hours of their life, as well as help their families and carers.

The pilot will last for one year and aims to recruit companion volunteers who will work across wards in Musgrove Park Hospital.

The volunteers will be companions to patients at the end of their lives. They will provide emotional support to patients and their relatives and the service provided will further enhance the end of life care given at Musgrove Park Hospital.

Speaking about the project Director of Nursing and Governance, Carol Dight, said: “This scheme is intended to provide real support to patients in the last hours of their lives by having dedicated time to be with them, working closely with our ward staff. This will be a demanding role for anyone who takes it on, but also one that I think will be immensely rewarding.” 

The presence of a volunteer companion will be a friend to the dying person and their family and carers during this difficult time. This is a new role, and one that will have its challenges. Full training will be given to the volunteers before they start working with patients.

Julia Bearne, Project Manager at Marie Curie, said: “As well as providing vital support to patients, companion volunteers will also make a significant difference to people’s families, who can often feel overwhelmed and isolated when a loved one is at the end of their life. By offering practical and emotional support, companion volunteers will be there to help patients and their families at the most difficult of times.” 

Anyone wanting to find out more about the scheme can attend a drop-in session between 5pm and 8pm on Thursday, 24th April in the Boardroom at Musgrove Park Hospital (located in the Old building). Alternatively you can contact Julia Bearne on 07730 751685 or email Julia.bearne@mariecurie.org.uk.