St Nicholas Hospice Care aspires to help more families across west Suffolk within the community
- Credit: ST NICHOLAS HOSPICE CARE
The chief executive of St Nicholas Hospice Care has said the charity is “committed” to supporting terminally-ill patients and their families in their own homes.
Barbara Gale is using this year’s national Hospice Care Week, which kicks off today, to shine a light on what the charity does within the community.
Mrs Gale said: “We know in Suffolk that people are living longer and as we live longer we are more likely to suffer from more than one condition so demand is growing on hospices but we also know it’s much harder to raise money.
“We have taken a dip in income from the NHS so there’s issues around demand growing and resources getting harder to get. So we need to work out how we can grow differently – that’s the work we are doing at the moment to try and develop services.
“What we are doing here is not about the building, it’s about supporting people where they are, in a place where people want to be and helping them and their families make the most of that last chapter of their lives.
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“We have more than 150 hospice neighbours who give practical help, take people out for the day, walk the dog, help with their shopping – practical things that really make such a difference.
“When someone is being looked after at home, we give families a break so they can get some sleep.
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“It’s about helping people live their life in their environment, not about coming to the building. We are committed to taking services out to people.”
St Nicholas Hospice Care looks after people across west Suffolk and Thetford.
As well as providing in-patient and out-patient palliative care from its Hardwick Lane site in Bury St Edmunds, the charity also helps patients in their own homes.
In the last financial year, staff from the hospice made almost 5,500 home visits and delivered more than 500 one-to-one bereavement sessions.
The hospice runs open house drop-in sessions offering people the chance to meet others facing similar situations in a comfortable and relaxing space.
This month the charity is launching a bereavement café in The Apex, Bury St Edmunds.
In 2014, the charity opened Suffolk’s first hospice outreach hub in Camps Road, Haverhill, which last Friday was the location of an open evening and fashion show organised to mark Hospice Care Week.