An honest talk about death

By Barrie Hudson - 6 May 2021

CharityCommunity

Prospect Hospice is encouraging people to have open conversations about death, dying and bereavement.

  • Prospect Hospice medical director Sheila Popert

    Prospect Hospice medical director Sheila Popert

The charity is playing its part in raising awareness of subjects some people find difficult during Dying Matters Awareness Week, which runs from 10-16 May.

Statistics released by Dying Matters, the movement run by Hospice UK, show that nearly a quarter of adults in the UK are uncomfortable thinking about their own death and end of life issues.

They also say that 74 percent of people haven’t written down their wishes or told people closest to them what they would prefer at the end of their life.

Throughout Dying Matters Awareness Week, Prospect Hospice will be publishing blogs by members of staff on its website and posting questions on its social media channels, encouraging people to join in the conversation and think about their wishes.

Sheila Popert, medical director at Prospect Hospice, said: “At Prospect Hospice we care for people at the end of their lives and we open conversations with them to find out what’s important to them and their wishes.

“Dying Matters Awareness Week gives us the opportunity to open up the conversation about death, dying and bereavement with our wider community. Death and dying is part of life and, therefore, we should talk openly about it. 

“Thinking about your plans, for example, how you want to be cared for at the end of your life or what you would like for your funeral service, and sharing your wishes with your family means you and your loved ones are prepared.”

Prospect Hospice will also be facilitating a death café - a forum encouraging open discussions about death and dying.

This will take place on Thursday, 13 May at 7pm on Zoom and is for anyone interested in sharing experiences or just listening to the discussion - there is no agenda. 

More information about the death café event can be found at www.prospect-hospice.net/deathcafe

Prospect Hospice provides care to people at its hospice in Wroughton, in its inpatient unit and in people’s homes.

Its services have continued throughout the pandemic, with an increasing emphasis on providing care in the community.

Last year the number of patients supported by the hospice who died at home increased by 41 percent on the previous year.

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