STAFF at a newly-opened hospice have been praised for the work they are doing to improve the quality of life to people with a life limiting illness.

Since opening its doors in April, the Heart of Sandwell Day Hospice – based at Rowley Regis Hospital – has helped many palliative patients who have been given much needed care and attention.

Councillor Ann Shackleton, chairman of the Sandwell health and wellbeing board, along with fellow board member Cllr Syeda Khatun, were recently shown around the facility by palliative team leader Sue Law.

Sue said: “The hospice plays an important role in the lives of the patients that visit. It is there to improve the quality of their lives and is an opportunity for our patients to interact with people and professionals.

“Patients also have the opportunity to take part in many activities including arts and crafts sessions, complementary therapy, fatigue/anxiety and breathless interventions and other meaningful activities.

“The feedback has been excellent, currently patients attend for a 12-week programme so everyone who wants to attend has the opportunity to come.

“As well as socialising and taking part in various activities, patients also get to speak to a palliative care nurse who can discuss their care plans with.”

Cllr Shackleton added: “One of the board’s key priorities is to improve the support that people receive at the end of their lives.

“This visit was an opportunity for both Councillor Khatun and myself to look at this new provision for palliative day care in Sandwell and talk to staff and patients

“All the patients valued the service and the opportunity to engage socially with people in similar circumstances.

“We would like to commend the staff for their commitment, knowledge, understanding and positivity which were all reflected in their practice.”