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Palliative suite at the Rutland Memorial Hospital is refurbished

A suite where friends and families can share a relative’s last hours has been refurbished.

The improvements to lighting and decoration were the first major upgrade to the Karen Ball Suite at Rutland Memorial Hospital since it opened in 1993.

Palliative care unit at Rutland Memorial Hospital (7585248)
Palliative care unit at Rutland Memorial Hospital (7585248)

The £8,241 cost was met by the League of Friends at the hospital.

Pat Morley, chairman of the League of Friends, said: “It makes it look much more cheerful, fresh and clean. The old curtains were getting tatty.”

Mrs Morley said two of her family members died in the suite, adding: “They were looked after really well.”

Gates Garden Centre in Cold Overton, near Oakham, donated paintings, soft furnishings and a vase for the room.

Marketing manager Ali Bailey said: “We rely on local people for our business, and we like to give a bit back.”

The Karen Ball Suite opened in 1993. The Karen Ball Fund charity was set up in 1988 to provide improved facilities for the care of the terminally ill in Rutland. It was named after Karen, who died of cancer that year, aged just 21.

It has since passed on responsibility for the suite, and the adjoining courtyard garden, to the league of friends.

Carla Yaxley, deputy ward sister at Rutland Memorial Hospital, said: “Having it makes a massive difference because the relatives can just go in there and spend as much time as they want with the patient.

“It has a kitchenette, a wet room, and a sofa which pulls out to a bed for the

“We have tried to make it homely with some nice pictures.

“Everyone in Rutland knows about it, and we have had patients request to be cared for in the suite when they reach the end of their

“We are very grateful to the League of Friends for their support on the refurbishment, and to the Karen Ball Fund for developing the suite more than 25 years ago.”

You can take a look for yourself at the suite in a video, which can be viewed at https://youtu.be/1c1q1wHInPo

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