Article Text

Download PDFPDF

P-78 Complementary therapy in a Hospice setting– so much more than the power of touch
  1. Fiona McManus
  1. Ayrshire Hospice, Ayr, UK


Background In March 2020, staff began dealing with the effects of COVID-19. When the complementary therapy team returned from furlough, they created a new programme of support for patients, carers and staff, working remotely and social distanced as hands-on treatments were put on hold.

Aims To use the hospice complementary therapists’ skills and experience to support staff and strengthen the resilience of healthcare workers. To provide much needed support to patients and carers to improve their mental health and wellbeing through this challenging time.

Methods Access to one-to-one consultations with an Ayrshire Hospice complementary therapist, remotely via video call or telephone and face-to-face where safe to do so.

  • Bespoke aromatherapy products to support wellbeing delivered inhouse and to homes.

  • Relaxation and self-management advice for staff, patients and carers.

  • A comfortable space in which to relax and recharge and provide socially distanced treatments – such as Reiki, yoga, qi gong, mindfulness.

  • Wellbeing group sessions for staff x weekly online: Massage self-treatment, qi gong, relaxation, mindfulness, breathwork, yoga.

  • Regular relaxation sessions for patients and carers on new virtual day services.

  • Staff access to recorded wellbeing sessions on the intranet.

  • Evaluation developed – Identification of key issues experienced by staff


  • Support service to staff evaluated extremely well - evidence of feeling supported and understood, improved sleep, stress reduction.

  • Self-help tools given to empower people to manage their own wellbeing moving forward.

  • Staff have continued access to weekly wellbeing sessions on the intranet.

  • Future plans to share the library of our recorded wellbeing sessions with outside agencies such as local council and prison, for a small cost and use for fundraising.

  • Ability to reach patients and carers to support them without the need to travel to the hospice.

  • Blended approach to delivering complementary therapy service to reach more people.

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.