‘You only die once’ care meeting told

Dr. Susan Salt at Trinity Hospice
Dr. Susan Salt at Trinity Hospice
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People across the Fylde coast were encouraged to think about their end of life care at a special event.

The event at Trinity Hospice, timed to coincide with Dying Matters Awareness Week, was themed ‘you only die once’ and also encouraged people to talk to their friends and loved ones about their last wishes.

On Friday, more than 60 delegates from across the Fylde coast health and care sectors attended seminars and an exhibition where there was a particular focus on dementia care.

Trinity’s palliative care consultant Dr Susan Salt said: “It was a chance to discuss some of the things people tend to put off, or never actually get around to at all.

“Much of the day was about living well into old age and particularly about how we can express our views and wishes about care as we get older.”

Attending the day was Graeme Harrison, chaplaincy team leader at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

He said: “Dying Matters aims to raise awareness about death, dying and bereavement.

“It’s especially about planning ahead and about people having conversations about their wishes for care at the end of their lives.”

During the awareness week, the hospital Trust has launched a project aimed at looking after family members and loves ones of a dying patient.

Mr Harrison said: “We offer them a pack of toiletries, snacks, drinks, a blanket and information to help them if they are struggling at the bedside.

“I have spoken to people as they have visited the hospital, and they are surprised at the level of bereavement support available here.”

Friday’s event was organised in conjunction with the Trust and the Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Groups.

Organisations such as Marie Curie, Macmillan and the Carers were on hand with help and advice, and delegates also got the chance to learn more about Trinity’s ongoing refurbishment which is being supported by The Gazette.

For help call Lorraine Tymon, end of life co-ordinator at Blackpool Victoria Hospital on (01253) 955934.