THE MACMILLAN UNIT
(Please note that the telephone number to use to enquire about a patient on the ward is 01202 705291)
The Macmillan Unit is situated in Christchurch Hospital which is part of the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. This is an NHS Unit, supported by Macmillan Caring Locally. The Unit offers specialist palliative care to patients with cancer with difficult symptoms related to their cancer. The Consultants are also happy to give advice regarding pain control for any patient with a terminal illness, usually at a one-off outpatient appointment.
The Macmillan Unit has an inpatient ward caring for 18 patients, a team of Palliative Care Sisters who visit patients in the community, a day centre and a hospital support team who see patients in the Royal Bournemouth Hospital, and on other wards in Christchurch Hospital. The ward does not offer long term care for patients who do not require specialist palliative care. The team works closely with the oncology teams at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital and Poole General Hospital.
Patients are referred by their GP or by another hospital Consultant and will be seen for an initial assessment by one of the Macmillan Unit doctors, usually as an outpatient or on a domiciliary visit at home. Follow up will be by a Palliative Care Nurse liaising with the rest of the team at the Macmillan Unit. The Palliative Care Nurses work closely with the Primary Care Team. Patients with stable disease may be discharged from the service and may be re-referred at a later date.
MACMILLAN UNIT VISITING TIMES
There are no visiting time rules at the Macmillan Unit. However we do ask visitors to refrain from visiting just after meals as we would like our Patients to rest a while.
The Macmillan Unit has a well appointed visitor's lounge with widescreen television & a children's area comprising a computer, an Xbox 360 and craft kits. Visitors can make a hot drink in the beverage area and relax in comfort, or wander around the landscaped garden, aviary and Koi pond.
In 2009 the Macmillan Unit was awarded Practice Development Unit Status, making it a Centre of Excellence. This was based on two years of work, where the Staff developed new & innovative ways to improve patient care.
The Macmillan Unit also has a Teaching Wing, where these specialist skills are passed on to local Healthcare Professionals. Macmillan Caring Locally is committed to invest in training programmes to ensure that as many patients as possible will benefit from advanced palliative care.
THE DAY CENTRE
The Day Centre is open Monday to Thursday from 9.30 a.m. until 3.30 p.m.
The aim of the Macmillan Day Centre is to improve the quality of the Patient's life by offering much needed mutual support and understanding from the staff who acknowledge the importance of helping Patients to cope with their illness and the effects of treatment.
The nurses also endeavour to help them deal with any concerns they may have about the future and assist them to live as normal a life as possible, maintaining their independence.
The Day Centre Support Group provides a wide variety of diversional therapy activities. Many talents are revealed and developed giving a real sense of achievement and fulfilment. The group functions for the Patients' well being and to enable them to participate in activities and benefit from therapies such as Relaxation, Aromatherapy, Physiotherapy and Self Expression.
Suffering from cancer is a stressful and difficult journey. Watching a loved one going through it is emotionally and mentally challenging, which can often be overlooked. The Macmillan Family Support Team (based at the Macmillan Unit) offer comfort and support to the Families of our Patients.
At a very difficult time, it can be hard to focus on leading a normal life, when all around seems to be falling apart. The Family Support Team provide valuable advice and will talk through any problems or issues whenever needed.
The care is available from the time that a Patient is referred to the Macmillan Unit, through to bereavement and at any time in the future that there is a need.
The Team provides emotional and mental support, and offers advice on any financial support that may be available. This care is offered to all members of the Family including children.
‘Macmillan Caring Locally' built the Chapel at Christchurch Hospital in partnership with Christchurch Hospital League of Friends and the Bournemouth Free Church Council.
Adjacent to the Macmillan Unit, the Chapel provides a haven of peace within the Hospital for all denominations, races and creeds.
The Macmillan Unit has a beautiful landscaped garden, which is the envy of all the wards at Christchurch Hospital. It is funded by Macmillan and includes an aviary and a well stocked fish pond with waterfall.
The gentle lapping of the water tumbling over the waterfall, added to chirping sound of tropical birds, helps to make this stunning garden a refuge of tranquillity for our Patients and Visitors.
The pioneering Macmillan Unit was built in 1974. Macmillan Caring Locally have set aside funds to rebuild the Macmillan Unit in 2013/2014. The vision for the new Macmillan Unit is for it to be the benchmark by which future palliative care wards will be based.