What is palliative care?

Palliative care is about improving the quality of life for patients living with life-limiting illness. 

The specialist palliative care team at SaSH provides support for patients with progressive, non-curative illnesses.

Patients are generally seen on the wards, although they can be seen in other settings within the hospital.

What we do

We are a multi-professional team, comprising specialist nurses and doctors.

The team provides holistic assessment, advice and support to inpatients with illnesses that are not curable.

Our aim is to maximise quality of life by addressing the physical, psychological, spiritual and social needs of patients and their relatives or carers

The main activities of the hospital palliative care team are:

  • Pain control
  • Symptom control
  • Psychological, social and spiritual support for patients
  • Support for families and carers
  • Liaison with community-based palliative care teams
  • Advance care planning
  • End of life care
  • Education and training
  • Research. 

The team is made up of specialist palliative care doctors, clinical nurse specialists and administrative staff.  We act as an advisory service working alongside your medical team. You remain under the care of your own ward-based consultant for your treatment and we provide additional help, advice and support when needed.  We meet regularly with other teams, including discharge co-ordinators and spiritual care, as relevant to each individual patient.

End of life care

Some patients will always die in hospital, either by choice or necessity, and as an organisation we take the provision of care to patients at the end of their lives very seriously.

We understand that this is a difficult time for everyone and can appear to be very confusing.

Please do ask for the booklet ‘Information for relatives and carers when someone is dying.’ This explains the changes that happens to an individual when they are dying and how you might best support them.

‘We were most impressed and grateful for the kindness and professional care extended to my mother. The room and linens were pristine and she was kept clean and as comfortable as possible. Every time we arrived she was resting in a well-made bed with her hair brushed and looking cared for. She was afforded the opportunity to exit the world in a dignified and appropriate way.’


We take referrals from any healthcare professional, patients and relatives via the telephone numbers provided below. However, we do need the agreement of the patient and the treating medical team to become involved in care.

The team does not make home visits. These are undertaken by specialist palliative care teams in the community.

Education and training

We regularly have nursing students and other healthcare professionals undertaking placements with the team

We provide education and training throughout the trust

Audit/service evaluations

We regularly undertake surveys to ensure that we are providing a good service for our patients. You and your family members may be asked to take part in one of these surveys, but your care will not be affected if you choose not to take part.

We also take part in national audits.

Out of hours advice

The hospital palliative care team work 7 days a week 9am-5pm.

However, there is always specialist palliative care advice available for healthcare professionals 24 hours a day. Please contact the ward team in the first instance if you feel specialist palliative care team advice is needed for inpatients outside of normal working hours.

If you are a patient or relative at home and need out of hours palliative care advice, please contact your community palliative care team, out of hours GP and/or your district nurse in the first instance.

Palliative care team

Surrey and Sussex NHS trust

East Surrey hospital

Canada Avenue



01737 768511 Ext 2660



Meet the team

  • Dr Lucy Harris - Consultant in Palliative Medicine
  • Dr Martin Ashby - Consultant in Palliative Medicine
  • Elaine Edwards - Macmillan Lead Nurse for Palliative and End of Life Care
  • Megan Roberts - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Melissa Bradbury - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Beverly Hewitt - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Sarah Bell - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Amanda Taylor - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Gill Righton - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Christina Warr - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Suzi Parker - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Claire James - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Penny Jones - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Lou Gregory - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Claire Leslie - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Helen Farina - Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Gill James - Team Administrator

GMC guidance on treatment and care towards the end of life

GMC guidance on hydration and nutrition

Assessing capacity

Best interest decisions

Advance care planning

Dying Matters: Resources for talking about death and dying

How to talk about death and dying with children

If you would like to make a donation to SASH, please visit the SASH Charity website for more information about how to donate.