Fact-finding trip to a Worthing hospital

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A FACT-FINDING visit is being made by West Sussex County Council to the Queen Alexandra Hospital Home (QAHH) for disabled ex-Service personnel.

The county council says it hopes the visit will help it understand the needs of veterans and their families.

The Worthing-based national charity can take up to 60 residents at any one time.

Many of its residents, the oldest of whom is 101 and the youngest 25, have suffered loss of limbs; suffer neurological disorders; or illnesses such as cancer and heart disease.

It has gained a national reputation for treating ex-Service personnel with acquired brain injuries.

The visit, on April 24, comes with the county council examining the needs of veterans in Sussex and families and children of serving personnel based at Thorney Island.

Peter Catchpole, West Sussex County Council’s Cabinet Member for Adults’ Services, who is heading up the visit, said he wanted to see the facilities and residents to help gain an idea of their future needs.

He said: “We owe our veterans a debt of gratitude for their service. Some of them will have suffered horrific injuries and we need to ensure that we have the relevant services joined-up and offering the help and support they need to give them the best quality of life that their injuries and disabilities allow.

“We must not forget the families - and while the visit to the QAHH is to gain an understanding of veterans’ needs, we must also remember that their families will need help as well, which is why we are also undertaking a needs assessment of families and children of serving personnel at Thorney Island.”

QAHH chief executive John Paxman said: “For 93 years QAHH has provided nursing care and rehabilitation for the physically disabled ex-Service personnel of our country.

“With conflicts still happening across the world, it is inevitable that for many current Service personnel, QAHH will be required by them if they too become injured – and not just in the short-term but for the long-term too.

“With a wide range of state-of-the-art facilities here, we are able to meet the needs of each individual who requires our support. We also ask the public to show their gratitude and respect for these courageous, brave Service personnel by supporting our work and helping QAHH to raise the £1.3m needed each year to provide the nursing and rehabilitation that these Servicemen and Women deserve and require.”