Her Royal Highness The Countess of Wessex, has given the new £13m Northern Ireland Hospice building in Belfast a royal seal of approval.
The Royal visitor unveiled a plaque to commemorate the opening of the charity’s dementia-friendly facility which provides specialist palliative care services to people from all over Northern Ireland in Hospice and in the community.
The adult hospice, located in the north of the city nearby the Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice, was completed and opened last spring, with 18 private en-suite bedrooms, private gardens, rehabilitation suites, a community nursing hub and a dedicated Education and Research Centre, making it a world leader in palliative care.
It is the first dementia-friendly hospice of its kind in the UK.
During her visit, HRH enjoyed a tour of the new Hospice, meeting clinical and corporate staff and volunteers. She also took the opportunity to spend time with patient Mrs Andrea Murtagh and husband Fergal (from Belfast), before unveiling an official plaque to commemorate the day.
Northern Ireland Hospice has been at the heart of the community since it began, and has previously welcome Her Royal Highness, Queen Elizabeth, in 1991 and the Prince of Wales in 1998.
Before departing, the Royal visitor was presented with a gift on behalf of Northern Ireland Hospice, by Rathmore Grammar School pupil Kevin Donnelly Jnr. Kevin’s mother, Sharon Donnelly, who sadly passed away in October 2017, was cared for at Hospice.