Palliative care is end of life care for someone with a life limiting illness. First of all, it involves managing any physical symptoms, such as pain. Palliative care also involves emotional and psychological support for the person dying and their loved ones.
Across Berkshire, palliative care can be provided in various settings depending on personal circumstances and preference. This includes the hospital, home, hospice or care home.
This guide will look at the options available along with contact details.
NHS Palliative Care in Berkshire
Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust
The Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust palliative care team bring comfort and dignity to patients and their families across the county. The team can provide palliative care in hospital or in a patient’s own home.
The Highclere and Donnington wards at West Berkshire Community Hospital are equipped to accommodate all palliative care needs and the doctors and nurses on the ward specialise in end of life medicine and care. The community nursing team provide palliative care in the home.
To access the NHS palliative care service in Berkshire, please speak to your GP or healthcare professional.
For more information regarding hospitals in the county please see our guide to NHS and care services in Berkshire.
An advance directive, sometimes known as an advance statement, is a declaration that outlines an individual’s future care plan, taking into account all of their personal preferences. It means that if someone becomes so unwell that they can no longer communicate, their relatives are clear on how to make the best decisions on their behalf.
It is important to note that an advance directive is not the same as an advance decision, also known as a living will. This is a decision made in advance to refuse certain treatments in the future.
For more information on advance directives and how to make one, please see our comprehensive Age Space guide to Advance Directives and Living Wills.
Hospices in Berkshire
Hospices are pleasant, warm and relaxing places where people with a life-limiting illness can spend time with family and friends whilst being cared for. In Berkshire, there are two hospices serving the West and the East of the county.
Sue Ryder, West Berkshire
The Sue Ryder team provide palliative, neurological and bereavement support to people across Berkshire. They are well equipped to support families through the last stages of a loved one’s life. Depending on the care required, Sue Ryder provide a range of services in different settings. All care is free.
Duchess of Kent Hospice, Reading
The Duchess of Kent hospice in Reading has inpatient beds and around-the-clock monitoring and expert care to manage symptoms. This means that people are as comfortable as possible. Furthermore, the hospice provides compassionate care and expert advice for patients and families.
Day Services in Newbury and Wokingham
Sue Ryder Palliative Care Hub Berkshire
- Address: West Berkshire Community Hospital, Benham Hill, London Road, Berkshire, RG18 3AS
- Telephone: 01635 273 725
- Email: [email protected]
Sue Ryder Wokingham
- Address: Wokingham Hospital, 41 Barkham Road, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG41 2RE
- Telephone: 0118 949 5030
- Email: [email protected]
Hospice at Home
The Sue Ryder team are also able to provide palliative care in the home through their community nursing team. This includes support for surrounding family.
Referrals can be made by a family member or healthcare professional. Please get in touch using the contact details below.
Thames Hospice, East Berkshire
The Thames Hospice provides expert care for people with a life-limiting illness in East Berkshire and South Buckinghamshire. They also work to support families and carers. Thames Hospice attend to physical, social and psychological needs among patients. They have a highly skilled medical team to arrange a programme of tailored care to individual needs. Support can be provided in a number of settings, depending on circumstances as outlined below.
Inpatient Hospice, Maidenhead
The Thames Hospice inpatient unit has 28 beds and is based in Maidenhead. Surrounded by stunning landscaped gardens, many with a view of Bray Lake, each room has an en-suite bathroom, smart television, space for families to stay over and a private terrace.
Living Well & Therapy Services
The Living Well Service helps patients to manage and adapt to the challenges of living with a life-limiting condition. The Thames Hospice offer a range of activities and therapies to help build confidence, promote independence and wellbeing and ensure that patients maintain a good quality of life.
Patients will receive an initial assessment at the Hospice in Maidenhead with one of their Clinical Specialists and will then be able to access a range of services tailored to their needs, such as complementary therapy, physiotherapy, counselling support and day therapy services. You will also be able to join a supportive six week wellbeing programme at the Hospice, offering advice and information on managing symptoms, nutrition and diet, as well as practical advice on managing financial matters.
24 Hour Advice Line
Thames Hospice run a 24-hour palliative and end-of-life care telephone advice service. The service is for people living in Berkshire and is available 24/7, 365 days a year, to provide guidance on symptom management, practical advice and emotional support. The team can send a rapid response nursing team if need be.
- Telephone: 01753 848925
Referrals can be made by a patient’s GP or any healthcare professional involved a patient’s care.
Counselling and lymphoedema referrals can be made by individuals or family members.
The team are happy to show potential patients and families around the hospice’s facilities. Please get in touch using the contact details below.
Bereavement Support Services in Berkshire
Dealing with the death of a loved one can be a really difficult time. However, there are specialised bereavement support services in place across Berkshire to help. For more information please see our guide to bereavement support services in Berkshire.