Nurse knits hearts for palliative care patients isolated in lockdown

A nurse who has knitted hearts for people in palliative care has encouraged others to join her.

Amber Cantwell, 24, from Norfolk, decided to make the hearts after seeing how important skin-to-skin contact can be for patients during their final days.

Hearts made by a nurse for patients in palliative care
(Amber Cantwell)

“Unfortunately because of the nature of the coronavirus, they are deprived of human touch and love from their relatives,” Ms Cantwell told the PA news agency.

“I thought the love hearts would provide comfort during these times and act as a hand to hold, to let them know that although no one is visiting, they are at the front of our minds.”

Ms Cantwell, who is working towards her anaesthetic nursing qualifications, decided to make the hearts while she was self-isolating due to her mother’s coronavirus symptoms.

She was initially going to send them to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, but was told they cannot accept them at this time.

The hearts, which take around 90 minutes to make, will be posted to palliative care patients in community hospices and care homes instead.

Hearts made by a nurse for patients in palliative care
(Amber Cantwell)

“My hope is to inspire people to be creative during these difficult times and encourage people to do whatever they can for those in need,” Ms Cantwell said.

“Now I’m back at work in a busy cardiothoracic centre, I hope to continue in my free time and I hope other people will join me.”

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