|£60m to improve care quality in hospices|
|Written by publicservice.co.uk|
|Wednesday, 30 May 2012|
Hospices will get £60m to help improve the quality of care for people nearing the end of their lives, the care services minister Paul Burstow has announced.
The money – which will be available for all adult and children's hospices in England – is intended to improve care for patients and families by "enhancing the hospice environment" as well as supporting the care that hospices provide to people in their own homes.
Hospices will be able to apply for funding for improvements to day-therapy facilities, including providing transport services, developing or improving out-reach services to support people in their own homes, refurbishment of inpatient and visitor areas, including improvements to bedrooms and bathrooms and providing overnight facilities for families, improvements to mortuary and bereavement facilities and improvements to gardens and outside spaces so patients can spend time outdoors.
The main criteria are that projects deliver improvements that directly benefit patients, have a tangible impact on the physical environment and provide value for money.
"Our surroundings at the end of our lives play a critical role in our wellbeing," Burstow said. "This money will help hospices all over the country make improvements such as redesigning rooms or putting in place facilities to help people remain independent.
"We are making this investment because we want hospices to be able to provide dignified, compassionate, high quality care and support to people and their families at what is a difficult time in their lives."
David Praill, chief executive of Help the Hospices, said: "In these challenging times, investment in hospices is vital so they can modernise and expand in order to meet the growing needs of the communities they serve. This new grant programme will make a huge difference to the quality of care that hospices provide to people with terminal and life-limiting illnesses at home and in hospices."
And Barbara Gelb, chief executive of Together for Short Lives, said she was "delighted that England's children's hospice services will have the chance to benefit from this funding to enhance the lives of the thousands of children and families who need their support".
She added: "We will work with the department and the children's hospices to help make sure that the money is used to make the greatest impact."