Patient and visitor information

Bereavement

Everyone reacts differently to a death. It is normal to feel a whole range of emotions numbness, disbelief, anger, guilt, pain and yearning for your loved one, panic or fear. Accompanying this may be loss of sleep and inability to concentrate. All of this is normal and may go on for days or months.

There is nothing that will take away the pain of losing a loved one. However, we know that support following the loss of a loved one is important. The best and most available support is usually that of our family, friends and our communities.

Reading about bereavement can be another source of support. It can help you to realise that what you are experiencing is natural and normal and also help you to understand why you might be responding or experiencing certain things. If you feel you would like to read more about bereavement, we recommend the following:

Help is available if you need it. If you feel you are struggling and might need some more support we would recommend you speak to your GP.


Supporting children and young people

There is a lot of help available to children and young people who are struggling with bereavement. The principles of support from family and friends and of having information to help them understand what is happening is just as relevant for children as it is for adults. However, the age of the child or young person is important to consider. Child bereavement UK has information and videos specific to supporting children of different ages.

Bereavement during the COVID-19 pandemic

We understand that losing a loved one at any time is difficult, but the challenges posed by the current COVID-19 pandemic can make it even more so. Isolation might mean that you are not able to spent time with friends and family in the same way and support each other as you might have done at other times, but you can still speak to people by telephone and videocall. Continuing to feel connected to others can help.

Because we recognise that COVID-19 may have made accessing this support more of a challenge, the NHS has set up a national COVID-19 Bereavement Helpline to offer guidance, support and advice. This helpline operates from 8am to 8pm on 0800 2600 400.

COVID Marie Curie Newcastle Bereavement Support Service is designed to meet the needs of bereaved people in the community who have lost someone due to COVID, or whose grief process has been impacted by COVID.

Referrals can be made by a member of your healthcare team or directly to the hospice using the information below:

- To get more information you can email mariecuriehospice.newcastle@nhs.net or call: 0191 219 1120 and they will direct you to the self-referral process.

Bereavement- Useful Contacts at Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

For support with how you are feeling and dealing with grief:

Hospital Chaplain
0191 233 6161
(Ask for the on-call Chaplain to be telephoned)
On-call Chaplain available 24 hours a day every day

Hospital Chaplains are not just there for the Religious.
They provide supportive care to people of all faith and no faith.
They are trained to provide mental health first aid and are able to refer to other agencies as appropriate.

For information about practical information about what to do after a person has died:

Hospital bereavement officer
0191 223 1146 (Freeman)
0191 282 4348 (RVI)
Available Weekday™s 08:30 am to 4:30 pm

PALS
The Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) can offer on-the-spot advice and information about the NHS. You can contact them on freephone 0800 032 02 02 or e-mail northoftynepals@nhct.nhs.uk

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