Bharti who is 50 and lives in Egham first had contact with the hospice in the summer of 2021 after a recommendation from her oncologist to seek some advice on palliative care and a referral from her District Nurse. Bharti has Metastatic Breast Cancer and received the news in December 2019 that the cancer had spread to her lymph nodes, bone marrow, lungs and recently to her ovaries too.
“I didn’t know what to expect and couldn’t get my head around it to start with as when you hear hospice you think of one thing” commented Bharti “But now my perception of hospice care has completely changed”.
Caring for a patient with a life limiting illness is not just about providing medical care with pain and symptom relief. At the hospice we also provide complementary and occupational therapy treatments through our Wellbeing Centre and emotional support through our Counselling Team for our patients and their families.
The Hospice Counselling team is a combination of staff and volunteer counsellors who are all specially trained professionals with many years’ of experience providing our patients and their families with a supportive and confidential environment.
Bharti is supported by one of our volunteer counsellors who is able to provide her with the opportunity to talk through any anxieties or concerns she may be experiencing.
“When I first came to the Hospice I didn’t know what to expect as I had never been to a hospice before but the Wellbeing Centre is so relaxing and welcoming and the beautiful smell of lavender is instantly calming” commented Bharti “We know the hospice are there at the end of the phone if we need them whether it be for medication or for counselling and I feel reassured that my children have relationships with the staff at the hospice so it won’t be so scary for them all”.
Bharti’s daughter Aneesha is also receiving counselling from another member of our team who she has been meeting with via Zoom and Facetime due to the pandemic.
“To start with we had some family counselling sessions but it has been more beneficial for me to talk with a Counsellor on my own and I know they are there to help me come to terms with my Mums cancer” said Aneesha.
Bharti and Aneesha have also benefited from visiting our Bradbury Wellbeing Centre which is based in the Hospice. Our Wellbeing Team provide our patients and their carers with complementary therapy treatments, these are non-medical treatments that have many beneficial effects such as aiding relaxation and reducing stress as well making them feel special, pampered and cared for.
“We have only had the opportunity to visit the Wellbeing Centre a couple of times as I had to go back into hospital because I was very unwell but both Aneesha and I have so been looking forward to coming back in” added Bharti “It is so nice to have the chance to be pampered and to take our minds off things”.
In September Aneesha took on the Surrey Half Marathon to help raise funds for the Hospice and smashed her target of £500 by raising an incredible £2,132.
“The hospice has helped me immensely throughout my mum’s cancer diagnosis. The staff are incredibly helpful and are always on the other end of the phone for advice and assistance their support has been crucial in helping us through this journey” said Aneesha