RNIB Pears Centre to fill gap in vital services for young people

A care service for children and young people with high health needs is set to open at the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) Pears Centre for Specialist Learning in Coventry. This service will be the first of its kind to serve the Midlands region and available from the end of November.

For more than 50 years, RNIB Pears Centre has provided individually-tailored care and education to children and young people aged up to 19 years old with sight loss and complex needs. The service will now be extended to young people who require long-term ventilation or who have life-threatening or life-limiting conditions. As well as providing the most appropriate level of individual support, the service will help to relieve hospital and hospice places in the Midlands area.

A total of six places will be available in specially-adapted facilities. The centre can support young people during transition periods from hospital to their home environment. Long term placements, rehabilitation, medical care and respite care will also be available. A team of nurses, together with therapists and social care workers, will work with parents and families to support them in managing these conditions.

Ginny Tyler, Principal Manager of Care and Wellbeing at RNIB Pears Centre said: “We have been working very closely with our NHS colleagues to develop this service. As well as specialist care, bespoke packages of educational support can also be provided for young people for whom attending school can be physically challenging.

“Building on over 50 years of expert care and education, we can offer the very best service to these children, young people and their families.”

David Widdas, Consultant Nurse Children with Complex Health Care Needs of South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust,
added: “The development of long-term ventilation short breaks and residential care at RNIB Pears Centre fills a huge gap in services for this group of children with highly complex needs within the Midlands and beyond.”

More information…

RNIB Pears Centre for Specialist Learning (formerly RNIB Rushton School and Children’s Home) offers individually-tailored education, care and therapies to young people with complex needs who are blind and partially sighted up to the age of 19.

Everyday around 100 people in the UK start to lose their sight. There are around 2 million people in the UK with sight problems. RNIB is the leading charity working in the UK offering practical support, advice and information for anyone with sight difficulties. If you, or someone you know, has a sight problem RNIB can help. Call the RNIB Helpline on 0303 123 9999 or visit www.rnib.org.uk

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