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Praise for new Norfolk reablement unit at its formal opening

PUBLISHED: 15:48 24 May 2018 | UPDATED: 15:48 24 May 2018

L-R, John Worthington, Shelagh Gurney and Muriel Johnson at Benjamin Court. Pictures: David Bale

L-R, John Worthington, Shelagh Gurney and Muriel Johnson at Benjamin Court. Pictures: David Bale

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Patients and relatives sang the praises of Cromer's new reablement unit at its formal opening.

Benjamin Court. Pictures: David BaleBenjamin Court. Pictures: David Bale

Norfolk County Council has invested £1.6m at Benjamin Court, which has been changed from a palliative care unit to a reablement centre.

It is now focused on helping patients regain their independence after being in hospital, instead of supporting them at the end of their life.

Shelagh Gurney, vice-chairman of Norfolk County Council’s adult social care committee, who opened the unit, said: “We understand how much people value their independence, and want to stay in their own homes for as long as possible and our new unit is certainly making that possible for more of our residents.

“Since it opened three months ago it has already helped nearly 50 people get back on their feet and return home safely and confidently after a hospital stay.”

Ex-Second World War Commando John Worthington was the first patient at the new unit and returned for its formal opening today.

The 93-year-old former fisherman was in hospital with a double pneumonia before he was transferred.

He now lives at home in Overstrand with his wife Yvonne, 95. He said: “I’ve been at home now for quite some time and I’m very happy.”

Iris Day, 93, moved to the unit from the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, after suffering a heart attack.

Her daughter Trisha Hawkins, from Sheringham, said: “Mum is looking forward to moving back home to Wroxham, but it’s been brilliant here. They’ve got her up and moving round. She had her hair done the other day. The staff are lovely and could not have been more attentive. We know she’s safe here and she’s much brighter than when she left hospital. It takes a lot of worry away from relatives.”

The investment in Benjamin Court is part of the council’s drive to support people to live independent lives in their own homes for as long as possible and to help prevent people from having to go into long term residential care.

The new service is being delivered by the council’s Norfolk First Support team, which was launched in 2007.

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