Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospital’s (DBTH) have today announced that they are launching the Serenity Appeal to help improve local bereavement and maternity facilities.
Health professionals at the Trust are launching the campaign to support the creation of the ‘Serenity Suite’ within the Women’s and Children’s Ward at Doncaster Royal Infirmary (DRI), whilst also funding improvements at Bassetlaw Hospital,
As the namesake of the appeal, the Serenity Suite will be a designated space for families to go if they have experienced a bereavement, allowing them to spend time with, and mourn, the loss of their new-born. It will be a self-contained and sound-proofed environment, equipped with a kitchen and bathroom, as well as having soft furnishings and lightings, all of which, it is hoped, will help support families during a highly sensitive time.
The appeal hopes to raise £150,000 to fund the project, much of which will be achieved through a variety of smaller fundraising activities and some larger challenges. The funding will not only allow the creation of the suite itself, but also be used to enhance the support given at all stages of baby loss, right from early pregnancy to infant loss. This will be accomplished through the purchasing of a new scanning machine for Bassetlaw Hospital’s Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit (EPAU), as well as by renovating the counselling rooms both at DRI and Bassetlaw.
The EPAU has provided care for approximately 30 people throughout the last two weeks who were diagnosed with early pregnancy loss, and provide urgent care services on both sites for complications associated with early pregnancy. Colleagues within the service want to improve overall patient experience and together will be using the funding given through the Serenity Appeal to replicate their service across both Worksop and Doncaster, enabling the Bassetlaw site to offer an in-house scanning service as well. This would significantly improve the service and quality of care offered to those who require it, whilst also having the added benefit of enabling the Bassetlaw ultrasound department to provide extra scanning appointments each day.
Matthew Proctor and Rhian Morris, who are the Trust’s Bereavement Midwives, have been working hard to make this project a reality. Matt said: “As a Trust we have long provided a good level of physical care, as we know from more complex patient pathway journeys, care is not just about delivering physical care between people. The importance of a safe, caring, holistic environment is highly beneficial. The environment makes a positive impact on their mental health and conversely a negative impact if it isn’t appropriate.”
Matt then went on to discuss the benefits of the Serenity Suite. “The suite will significantly improve the service that we are able to deliver here at Doncaster Royal Infirmary. The midwives do an amazing job supporting these women and families during their time of need, and this suite will ensure that this level of care increases. For these women and families, the memories will be everlasting and it’s important that we make these as comfortable and precious as possible.”
Some fund raising has already gotten underway for the appeal, and the Trust has already received a significant sum from local families, sponsors and organisations to help this dream a reality.
Kevin and Donna Phillips sadly experienced the loss of their child, Luke, last year at the DRI. They believe that the introduction of this suite will make a massive difference to the experience that families go through during this traumatic time.
Kevin said: “We feel that a room which offers just the little things – a kettle and microwave, table, chairs and even a radio would make all the difference. It would give the relatives and friends involved in this tragic experience somewhere to sit and support each other, rather than some having to sit, with the rest standing, feeling uncomfortable.”
There are a number of ways to donate to the Serenity Appeal, whether you want to make a one-off donation, take part in a sponsored event or create your own fundraising project – please head to https://dbthcharity.co.uk/serenity-appeal/ for more details.
If you have questions or would like to request more information in regards to this appeal, or for any other charitable project at the Trust, please contact the Charity Team on Tel: 01302 644244, email: DBTH.Charity@nhs.net or head to http://www.dbth.nhs.uk/charity