Bristol's first Macmillan Wellbeing Centre opens at Southmead Hospital

Friday, 26 September 2014

Bristol’s first Macmillan Wellbeing Centre has opened at Southmead Hospital.

The centre, which provides advice and support to people with cancer, their friends and relatives, is a partnership between Macmillan Cancer Support and North Bristol NHS Trust.

The NGS Macmillan Wellbeing Centre at Southmead Hospital Bristol is a resource for people living with and beyond a cancer diagnosis, helping them access financial support, information about their condition and treatment along with details of support groups. It will also offer complementary therapies, sessions with dietitians and a walking group.

The centre - inside the refurbished Beaufort House on the Southmead Hospital site - has been designed with patients and their families in mind.  It has comfortable chairs, private spaces and guided access to information, along with space for education and support groups.

People will be able to simply drop in and make the most of the centre, which has been designed to be comfortable and non-clinical.

The official opening of the new centre was held on Friday to coincide with the national charity's World's Biggest Coffee Morning fundraiser.

Maggie Crowe, Macmillan Development Manager for Macmillan Cancer Support said, “We are very excited about the opening of the NGS Macmillan Wellbeing Centre at Southmead Hospital, which will improve the lives of people living with cancer in Bristol.

“Being diagnosed with cancer is one of the toughest things that anyone can face and no-one should face that alone, it does not just impact on health, it has an impact socially, financially and emotionally. 

“This new NGS Macmillan Wellbeing Centre means that, for the first time in Bristol, there will be a dedicated Macmillan Centre to provide all the additional support that people need when they are diagnosed with cancer, both to help them through treatment and then to help with returning to a normal life afterwards, whatever that may mean for them.

“We are very grateful to Macmillan supporters and the NGS without whom, this new centre would not have been possible.”

Sue Jones, Director of Nursing and Quality at North Bristol NHS Trust, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Macmillan to offer cancer patients, their families and friends support through Bristol’s first Macmillan Wellbeing Centre at Southmead Hospital Bristol.

“This is a wonderful resource for our patients who have received a cancer diagnosis, giving them somewhere they can come for support and advice in a welcoming setting which promotes wellbeing.”

The NGS Macmillan Wellbeing Centre has been named in recognition of the support the charity receives from the National Garden Scheme.

NGS CEO, George Plumptre, said: “The National Gardens Scheme (NGS) is very proud to be putting its name in partnership with Macmillan to the new Wellbeing Centre at Bristol’s Southmead Hospital.

“The NGS has been making annual donations to Macmillan since 1983 and in 30 years has given the charity a total of £14.7 million. This makes the NGS Macmillan’s largest single funder in their long history.

“Supporting Macmillan at the new Wellbeing centre is a massively important new venture for our partnership, and confirms the National Gardens Scheme’s firm commitment to donating funds to support frontline nursing and caring in the community – where they are needed most. Working together with Macmillan, we hope that this is the start of a universally rewarding strategy that will continue with the NGS funding similar ventures in future years.”