Background Reiki therapy can be delivered ‘Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere’ – no equipment, towels or oils required. With minimal contraindications, using touch or non-touch, Reiki is a gentle, effective therapy for palliative patients and carers. Research, including a Cochrane review (2008) for pain reduction, supports the benefits of Reiki for side effects of nausea, anxiety, digestion issues and irritability.
Aim To initiate a staff training project to integrate Reiki within overall care in the day hospice, in-patient unit and the children’s hospice. Funding of £4700 was received for this project from the Hadfield Trust. Reiki therapist post was pump-funded by the Sam Buxton Sunflower Healing Trust for 2.5 years.
Methods Four staff nurses and two activity coordinators trained to Reiki II practitioner level. Involving eight contact days (64 hours), four Reiki share sessions (eight hours) and weekly at home practice over 11 months. Education sessions across the hospice raised awareness of the therapy and staff training project. New working practice on the wards introduced, including MYCAW evaluations and self-care tools for patients, carers and staff.
Results Trained staff now provide Reiki within their general roles on the wards, enabling Reiki to be available at point of need, day or night. Staff have been providing Reiki since April 2018, so results continue to be compiled. In two months, 70 additional patients, carers and staff have received Reiki from staff practitioners. Fundraising continue to explore future opportunities to train additional medical staff.
Conclusion With an increased number of patients benefiting from Reiki, plus boosted awareness stimulating referrals, we believe the training has made a significant difference to the quality of care – emotionally, physically and spiritually. Qualitative and quantitative data gathering continues.
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