Corporate Information

Kate's Corner opens at Ellesmere Port Hospital

A next-step-home facility called Kate’s Corner has been launched at Ellesmere Port Hospital in partnership with NHS Property Services.

The room, which is effectively a small apartment within the hospital, has been built to provide a space for people to learn or demonstrate they know how to take care of their loved ones post-discharge.

Kate’s Corner has been introduced as part of a £100,000 scheme, using tools and good practice from a national programme by the Department of Health and Kings Fund, to refurbish the Ruby Ward into a bespoke dementia friendly environment.

“Kate’s Corner is the result of a massive achievement which I take some personal pride in as well as great pride in the team on the Ruby Ward,” Matron Clare Edwards said. “It is an environment which will benefit patients of the future and improve their experience in hospital.”

Kate’s Corner benefits:

  • Relatives or carers can stay in the room alongside patients to learn relevant techniques under the supervision of hospital staff
  • It has two beds, a personal television, an en suite and a kettle
  • The ‘home-from-home’ décor has been designed to look and feel very different from traditional clinical environments
  • It could also be used to improve end of life care by providing a quiet, dignified space for patients and their families

The facility was inspired by the experience of Kathleen Herbert, 90, and her family when she spent time at the hospital for treatment on a severe pressure sore last year.

Kathleen’s children Ron and Rosemary were willing to provide round-the-clock care for their mother in a bid to prevent her going into a care home. A two-day stay in the area that is now Kate’s Corner gave them the chance to learn clinical skills needed for the ongoing care of their mum before Kathleen could be discharged home a few days later.

Ron, who cut the ribbon to open Kate’s Corner, thinks it will be a great asset to the hospital and is immensely proud that his mother’s journey will now help other people in future.

“What they’ve done in that ward is give us back our Mum. And for that we will be forever grateful,” he said.

The transformation of the Ruby Ward, which was designed by architects from Cassidy + Ashton, also included a new lounge area and a nostalgia room called Memory Lane.

The lounge has been introduced in place of a disused nursing station and has been kitted out like a normal living room, with an artificial fire, comfortable armchairs and a virtual fish tank.

Memory Lane, meanwhile, is a bigger space that is perfect for patients to socialise and have a cup of coffee together. Along the walls on either side are various nostalgia items and there are board games for patients to look at and use.

Tasmin Purssell, Assistant Project Manager at NHS Property Services, who coordinated the scheme, said: “It’s a wonderful facility, which will provide reassurance and reminiscence to the patients and I was delighted to be involved.

“The ward was designed based on guidance and principles from The Kings Fund, the National Dementia Strategy and the Prime Minister’s ‘Challenge on Dementia’. 

“There is increasing evidence that the physical environment within which care is delivered has a major impact on the outcomes of care for patients living with dementia, the experience of care for them and their carers, and the experience and reward for staff.”