Patsy McDaniel is a complementary therapist facilitator employed by the Belfast Trust.
Her role involves developing evidence based complementary therapy services for those who are affected by cancer. This a new project funded by Friends of the Cancer Centre to provide excellent complementary therapy services within local communities. This service enables people affected by cancer the opportunity to receive treatments closer to their own homes.
Patsy is based one day a week at the Old Meeting House in Railway Street where she offers treatments, including aromatherapy and reflexology free of charge to those who are affected by cancer. This includes patients and family members.
Patsy is based at the Macmillan Support and Information Centre at Belfast City Hospital. Patsy has worked for over 15 years in the field of complementary therapy and has worked in many countries teaching and working with people using reflexology, massage and aromatherapy.
I set off each day about 7.30am and throughout the week I travel to different outreach centres across the province.
On a Monday I am in Lisburn. The first thing I do is set up the room so everything is ready for the patients or carers arriving. I meet with the volunteer complementary therapists and make sure they have everything they need.
All of the equipment we use has been donated by local businesses and we are very grateful.
The service started in March and has been proving popular and we are hoping to extend the service to other days as it develops.
Patients and carers can receive four sessions of treatment free of charge and they can choose between reflexology, aromatherapy and massage. At the end of the four sessions, if there is space available, it may be possible to continue with the treatments.
People can be referred to the service by their GP, health visitor, Social Services or simply by word of mouth. At the first appointment we explain what the therapies entail and how they can be of benefit, we also teach relaxation techniques for home use. The feedback has been fantastic so far. People are really appreciating not having to travel to Belfast. It is much easier to access.
I really enjoy my job as it does make a big difference to people’s lives and I would encouraging anyone who is interested in finding out more about the options to contact me on 07702034147. There is no charge for the treatments.