24/7 Advice & Support | 020 3824 1268

24/7 Advice & Support | 020 3824 1268

Patient & Family Support

Inpatient support

We appreciate what a hospice admission and the diagnosis of a terminal or serious illness can mean to each individual. We offer emotional and psychological support to help everyone who is admitted to our Inpatient Unit and those close to them. 

For those being admitted to the Inpatient Unit (IPU), whether for symptom control, pain management or at the end of life,  just coming through the doors of a hospice can feel overwhelming. Our Patient & Family Support Team offer a calm understanding of the huge range and intensity of emotions that you may experience. We also bring a broad experience of common and complex issues a serious or terminal illness can bring.

How to access this service

As an IPU patient you will be asked on admission if you or those close to you would like to access Patient & Family Support. Please let us know – either then or at a later date if this becomes relevant. 

Other services

Palliative psychotherapy

Having a terminal diagnosis, dealing with ill health and facing the end of your life brings enormous and often overwhelming emotions. There is a loss of health, the loss of an imagined future and perhaps most painfully of all the reality of saying goodbye to family and loved ones. We appreciate this is a lot to deal with on your own. Palliative psychotherapy provides support to process these issues in a safe space with a therapist experienced in all aspects of end of life care.

Some people ask ‘what is talking about it going to achieve’? The process of talking about your experiences can empower you to express your understanding of what is going on for you, and make sense of often incomprehensible feelings or situations. It can be an opportunity to grieve, to reflect on memories and relationships, or just to feel a little calmer and able to cope. The process can be individual but it can also involve family and loved ones to come to a shared understanding of being at the end of life.

The service is free of charge and open to all; we are an inclusive service and sensitive to cultural and religious identities.

Community palliative counselling

If your serious or terminal illness prevents you from accessing counselling at Michael Sobell House or Lansdowne House, we offer face to face counselling for patients and couples in your own home.

The Community Palliative Counsellor can visit at home to give you a space in which to safely explore the complex or overwhelming emotions which may arise for those with a diagnosis.

To access this service, a patient must have a serious or terminal diagnosis, be unable to access counselling services due to immobility or severity of illness and be referred by the NHS Community Palliative Care Team.

Resources:

Macmillan Cancer Support

• Five things about cancer

• Pre- bereavement 

• What matters conversations 

Meet our team

Ben Sealy, Psychotherapist

Ben has worked as a psychotherapist at Harlington Hospice for the last seven years, specialising in psychotherapy at the end of life. He completed his MSc in Contemporary Psychotherapy and Applications from Middlesex University with a thesis on psychotherapy within palliative care and hospice settings. Ben works in the community supporting the NHS Palliative Care Team and on the Inpatient Unit at Michael Sobell House. Ben has a particular interest in psychological and emotional care with neurodegenerative disorders. In addition to psychotherapeutic work with patients, Ben helps train nurses, paramedics, HCAs and doctors in psychological care at the end of life. Ben is a full member of the BACP and abides by their code of ethics.

Please check back to meet more of our team soon and read the Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions here

Additional resources

• On hospice care and admission:

https://www.hospiceuk.org/information-and-support/your-guide-hospice-and-end-life-care

https://www.hospiceuk.org/information-and-support/your-guide-hospice-and-end-life-care/support-carers

• On conversations about end of life:

https://www.whatmattersconversations.org/what-matters-conversations

• On dying, by patients and relatives:

https://www.lifedeathwhatever.com/five-things-about-dying

• On dying, from a medical perspective:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/ideas/videos/dying-is-not-as-bad-as-you-