Funding awarded to increase service for people living with heart failure

St Helena Hospice have been awarded funding to increase the services they provide for people living with heart failure. Traditionally hospice services were offered primarily to people with cancer. It is now understood that people with heart failure can also benefit from palliative care which can improve symptoms and quality of life.

Last year the charity applied for a grant of £30,000 from St James Place to widen the services offered to those with heart failure. It has created a ‘Heart to Heart’ group in which people with heart failure can meet and learn more about their condition and how to manage symptoms such as breathlessness.

“Sometimes I sit and I’m perfectly alright and I think there’s nothing wrong with me. But if I get up to move and I can’t… I lose my breath and it’s just gone. Picture the shape of a telly; I’m breathing in as it goes down the side and then out as it comes along the bottom. I find that absolutely amazing actually how you can get my breathing back, and I learnt that at the group.

“I wouldn’t otherwise be able to do those things I think I must do so that does make a big difference to me, a terrific amount.” John Wright, patient.

They also offer clinics specialising in breathlessness as well as groups focused on managing fatigue which can be a key issue for people with heart failure.

”People with heart failure often struggle on alone with pain and breathlessness, not realising that the hospice can offer support that can improve the quality of life,” said Dr Karen Chumbley, Clinical Director of St Helena Hospice.

This grant has allowed St Helena Hospice to develop registered nurse Adele Miller’s post to promote better care for those with heart failure. They hope that it will become more well-known that the hospice offers a wide range of services to help people live as well as possible with a diagnosis of heart failure.

If you or one of your family are living with heart failure and think you may benefit from the services described, please contact the hospice via SinglePoint on 01206 890360.

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