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WATCH: New meditation app helps cancer patients relax

WATCH: New meditation app helps cancer patients relax

Sunday 10 March 2019

WATCH: New meditation app helps cancer patients relax

Cancer patients receiving treatment on the hospital's oncology ward will soon have access to meditation apps to help reduce their stress and anxiety.

The 'Calm' apps, which will be installed on iPads given to patients during their time on the ward, will give users access to guided meditations covering anxiety, focus, stress, sleep and more.

They also include soothing music to help listeners relax and sleep, as well as video lessons on mindful movement and gentle stretching. 

Fojo oncology ward patients hospital

Pictured: Patients on the oncology ward have access to iPads to help distract them during treatment.

The relaxation initiative is part of collaborative efforts between FOJO, the Corbiere Ward – a 16-bed acute medical ward where a variety of medical conditions, including strokes, are treated – and Intertrust, who donated funds to download the apps.

Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at the latter, Helene Senior, explained that with some of her colleagues having used the oncology service, the firm decided to support FOJO, and wanted to fund something "completely different that would stand out."

In the end, they chose the 'Calm' app, noting the positive benefits it would have for cancer patients' mental wellbeing.

 Calm app meditation

Pictured: A number of meditation tracks are available on the app.

“Having the app available for the patients is quite powerful. There’s different types of meditation and it allows two, 10 or 12 minutes of headspace so they can calm their mind and body down, release endorphins and hopefully leave the unit feeling a little bit more positive.”

Cancer Nurse Specialist, Kerry Burnett from FOJO, said the app will be a huge benefit for the patients. She says it should help take their attention away from their treatment, or from needles, as some patients are sometimes anxious about them.

“It will help in many ways, leaving people feeling more in control, with confidence as well.

“Anxiety is a big thing with patients. Some of them have to have their veins accessed, the treatments are quite invasive, some patients worry about losing their hair. and being able to zone out will really help.”


Pictured: Sue Hill, resident_therapist, Helene_Senior from Intertrust and Julie Le Long nurse with Corbiere Ward staff members.

But the fundraising won't just benefit patients - it will also allow nurses on the oncology ward to attend an eight-week mindful and meditation course.

They will also be working with the Corbiere Ward team to support them with a compassionate care and wellbeing project where they will receive hands-on massage therapy and reflexology by resident therapist Sue Hill.

Julie Le Long, staff nurse on Corbiere Ward, said that her team "really appreciate the support".

"The whole Corbiere ward team are delighted. What a positive way to start the year," she said, adding that they will be seeking donations from new sponsors to "extend the compassion and care packages to other nurses throughout the hospital.”

WATCH: Express found out more about the app...

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