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Waterford Hospice

Official Opening of South East Palliative Care Centre (SEPCC)

Minister Donnelly visits University Hospital Waterford to open the Southeast Palliative Care Centre (SEPCC)

The Southeast Palliative Care Centre (SEPCC) at University Hospital Waterford was formally opened on Friday 7th July 2023 by Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly.

This unit was built with a €6m donation from Waterford Hospice Movement towards its construction costs thanks to the generosity of the people of Waterford and South Kilkenny.

Speaking at the official opening Danette Connolly, Chairperson of Waterford Hospice Movement (WHM) said ‘this is a momentous occasion for Waterford Hospice Movement, following 35 years of fundraising to provide a Community Palliative Care Service, as well as fundraising €6m for this building.   We are delighted to have this fantastic facility formally opened and fully operational for the people of Waterford and the Southeast’.

Danette went on to acknowledge the roles and vision of previous Board members and expressed delight that some of the founding and former directors were in attendance along with representation of our Support Groups. She acknowledged all donors, fundraisers and loyal volunteers who provide tremendous support.

The opening of the SEPCC marks a major milestone not just for patients and their families who now have access to a state-of-the-art inpatient facility, and over time will have access to a comprehensive range of Day Services but is also a milestone for WHM as the clinical Palliative Care service transferred to the governance of the HSE in May 2021.

The new governance arrangement allows WHM to focus on providing patient comforts, equipment and amenities for patients and their families i.e., to support as opposed to provide the palliative care service. Since the transfer, initiatives such as replanting and maintaining the outdoor gardens, indoor Courtyards, and provision of indoor plants to optimise the creation of a pleasurable and relaxing environment as well as enhancing additional spaces for reflection and comfort have been developed.

The Complementary Therapy Rooms and Inpatient Bathrooms have been adjusted to create the optimum comforting and spa like relaxation experience. Plans are advanced to provide Hairdressing, Barber, Beautician and Nail Care Services. All funds received go directly to providing additional comforts and supports for patients and families of the Palliative Care Service.

WHM will continue to collaborate with the HSE and Réalta -Waterford Healing Arts to optimise patient comfort and ambiance throughout the Centre.

The ongoing generosity of the people in supporting this long-awaited level of service and ensuring its continued development for patients and their families is greatly appreciated, – the ultimate goal being to have a level of services analogous with other communities who have had access to large well-established hospices for many years.

On Friday Waterford Hospice also launched their new branding to signify the evolved role of Waterford Hospice Movement.