Nothing can prepare you for the isolation.

Rendcomb Ward Side Rooms

Cheltenham

Rendcomb Ward at Cheltenham General Hospital has eight high dependency individual side rooms where patients undergoing intensive chemotherapy face months of treatment in isolation. This isolation is absolutely essential as patients are immunecompromised and unable to fight even the smallest of infections. The air supply in the rooms is strictly controlled and patients’ diets are monitored, again to avoid any chance of infection.

Some patients can face up to six months on Rendcomb Ward and LINC tries to provide some home comforts for the patients encased in these side rooms. Items such as reclining chairs, televisions with Sky, wi-fi, individual fridges and patient monitoring machines are to name a few.

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I spent five months inside room 7 which would drive most people crazy! Thanks to LINC I had access to an exercise bike, TV and most importantly a clinical psychologist which proved invaluable to my cancer treatment. Love LINC xxx

Catherine Beck

These side rooms are absolutely vital to patient recovery.

At a time when patients are fighting for their lives, their families are left to pick up the pieces and try to maintain some semblance of daily life. Family support is vital to patient recovery. Travel, housing, childcare and welfare expenses can be met by LINC when patients suddenly find themselves not only ill but facing dire financial hardship.

Increasingly LINC finds patients who need some kind of financial assistance. Whilst their individual life is put cruelly on standstill, the outside world continues to make its demands.

Patients who are self-employed or have no long term sickness cover are seriously affected by their treatment length. Families who rent their homes also worry about how rental payments can be kept up to date if the patient is unable to work. By providing some sort of short term solution and help, these families can concentrate on their recovery.

LINC funds two clinical psychologists who provide psychological support for patients and their families throughout their illness. Listening to one of our former patients, she passionately believed that the psychologist was essential to her recovery and taught her that it was alright to cry and face up to the impact and emotional rollercoaster of her illness.

One patient asked, “What would we do without LINC? I could not answer him. It’s vital we support LINC to support our patients and their families and friends. KEEP LINC ALIVE

Vivienne McCrorie

When our patients are told they have cancer, life suddenly goes on hold with an uncertain and unknown future for them and their family. This affects the patients financially, socially, physically, psychologically and mentally. It results in the loss of control over one’s own life.

The unknown is a daunting factor, but the LINC charity has provided sky TV, Wi-Fi and comfortable chairs in the Rendcomb side rooms to make life more bearable for the patients.

As patients go through their treatment/ disease, this can make them very weak, so LINC is now raising money to have walk in wash rooms, so that a chair can be placed in them so patients can sit and have a shower, without the risk of falling or trying to fit in a small cubical. Most of our patients are unable to stand to have a shower as they are too weak. This is something we all take for granted – to be able to wash or shower without any risk of falling or trying to fit in small cubical or being too weak to stand to have a shower and many patients go without.

LINC has provided our patients with many things and helped with medical equipment, vital for our patients care as well as equipment to try and help our patients maintain their level of fitness so they don’t get weak. Furthermore, LINC helps our patients with the psychological effects of cancer by providing extra clinical psychologists to help the patients through their treatment and the diagnosis.

In times of despair for our patients, LINC provides a sense of normality for our patients, to help them through this cancer journey.

Vivienne McCrorie

Essential equipment has been provided by LINC such as patient monitoring machines.

Patients can spend months in an isolation side room.