Innovative therapy provision launched

With current social distancing rules putting a stop to hands on complementary therapy, many of our therapists are using innovative ways to continue supporting people in their own homes

One of the holistic therapies offered by CancerCare is reiki, a Japanese technique which can help to aid relaxation and assist the relief of a range of symptoms including pain, tension, stress, anxiety and insomnia.

The recipient usually lies on a treatment couch while the therapist uses their hands, placed either on or just above them, to channel and balance energy fields in and around their body to stimulate its healing potential.

Given its “hands-on” nature, reiki was one of the first therapies to be stopped due to the social distancing guideline implemented at the beginning of the Coronavirus outbreak in the UK.

However, therapist Patricia Wilson has begun offering distant reiki sessions which are carried out over the phone, direct into the recipient’s home.

Patricia said: “Distant reiki is made possible by talking through any issues the client has beforehand and then using intuition and visualisation techniques. If I haven’t met the client in person before, it is still possible to treat them by seeing a photograph.

“The client is encouraged to find a quiet space in their home where they won't be disturbed, ideally lying on a bed covered with a blanket. During the session they can often experience the energy flowing into their physical body accompanied by mild tingling sensations, warmth and coolness. Clients often say how deeply relaxed they are, less stressed and with a sense of calmness,” she added.

One of Patricia's clients, who asked not to be named, was referred to her for aromatherapy following several surgical procedures for cancer and he described the treatments as highly beneficial and “the highlight” of his week.

He said: “Sadly, the sessions ceased with the recent outbreak of Coronavirus, however, Patricia offered me distant reiki as an alternative.

“I followed her instructions closely and after around half-an-hour I felt the vibrations begin in my head and spread to my limbs. There was a warmth throughout and at the end of the session I felt calm, relaxed and energised. I’m looking forward to further treatment with Patricia. Thank you.”

CancerCare Chief Executive Maria Chambers said:  “We anticipated the closure of our centres due to the outbreak and put a number of measures in place to be able to continue to support our clients.

“One of these was the innovative provision of hands-on therapies and I am delighted that Patricia is able to continue offering support to people in isolation by adapting her usual practices to this very unusual situation.”

Distant reiki is suitable for people of all ages, is non-invasive and may be used to complement more conventional treatments. For more information email

The therapy is being run alongside CancerCare’s Community Helpline which offers telephone support and essential food and medical supplies delivery.

The number is 03330 150 628 (charged at local rate) and people can also email: or text: 07860 018 278

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