More Support For Bereaved Families

Parents coping with the loss of a baby will now be able to spend time with their little one in a newly refurbished bereavement room at Forth Valley Royal Hospital, designed to give them the space and privacy required at such a difficult time..

The £16,000 scheme has taken eight months to complete and the refurbishment was made possible by the support and donations received from several sources including bereaved parents and families, pregnancy loss charities Sands and Simba, Tesco at Alloa and in house support from staff and services at Forth Valley Royal.

Cutting the ribbon to mark the opening was Carolann Mason from Stirling, who has had two early losses and two stillborn little boys. She raised almost £5,000 towards the project, by holding a big event in Alloa Town Hall featuring live music.

Carolann, who sold almost 200 tickets said: “If we had had this type of room when I lost my babies, it would have made life much easier. This room is amazing, it makes you feel  as relaxed as possible  in what are the toughest times. It’s good to know that the money raised is going back to something close to your heart.”

The makeover in the main bereavement suite in the women and children’s unit includes faux-suede wipeable furniture to meet infection control standards, a sofa bed, comfy chairs and tea-making facilities. An adjacent room has also been given a new look, in case two families need to be comforted at the same time.  In addition, three counselling/quiet rooms on the ground floor have also been upgraded to make them more user-friendly.

NHS Forth Valley Bereavement Adviser Alana Harrower explained: “We have tried to create a comfortable and homely environment, not clinical, not hospital. When families are going through a really bad time it gives them somewhere special where they can create precious memories with their babies.

She added: “Any future donations received by the Women and Children’s Bereavement Service will contribute to the continued maintenance of these rooms to ensure they are as comfortable as possible for parents and families at this very sad and distressing time in their lives.

Pictured:  Carolann Mason cutting ribbon with  front, Alison Wood, Forth Valley Sands and (left to right)  Bereavement Adviser Catriona Addison; Melanie Mitchell, Tesco Alloa; Elspeth Forsyth, Forth Valley Sands; Gemmalee Clark, fundraising family; Sara Fitzsimmons, Simba; Elaine Morgan, Robert Murphy Foundation.