This October, local hospice Ashgate Hospicecare are launching a new appeal to make their Hospice at Home service available 24/7 to everyone needing hospice care in north Derbyshire.
The appeal, which aims to add over 30 addition staff, including registered nurses, health care assistants and therapists to the small team the hospice already has, will bring vital end-of-life care to patients in their own homes outside of the current 9am-5pm service.
Hayley Wardle, Director of Quality and Patient Care at Ashgate Hospicecare, said, “We know from recent surveys undertaken by a number of different organisations that there is a real need for an extended hospice service in people homes across North Derbyshire but more importantly, patients and carers are telling us that this needs to be 24 hours a day and 7 days a week rather than the 9-5-week day service that we offer now.
“This would be a hugely valuable service for the community, working closely will all the other organisations providing care at end of life to patients and their families across north Derbyshire.‘’
A 24/7 service will mean that patients are cared for by a familiar face; somebody who is already knowledgeable about their illness. The hospice’s small team already care for over 1,800 patients in their homes each year, but have calculated that on average 16 families a week who desperately need this kind of service aren’t receiving the hospice’s care at all.
The burden often falls on a close family member to care for their loved ones full-time. This can be incredibly stressful and exhausting, both physically and emotionally, as many people with a terminal illness need round-the-clock monitoring and care.
Alan Oliver, who’s mum was cared for by our Hospice at Home Team, said, “Ashgate Hospicecare were really there for me during the hardest time. One of the nurses started coming once a week for a whole afternoon. It wasn’t for many weeks, of course, but that was an essential relief.
“It gave me that respite I needed. Even though I was only going out to do the shopping. Just being able to get out of the house for an hour or two was such a help. It was getting so difficult by that point; I don’t know what I would have done without that time to myself and I’m grateful to Ashgate for that.
“Mum didn’t want to go into a hospice or a home, so I’m fortunate that she was able to stay at mine until the end. However, the care she needed was too much for me to deal with on my own.
“We would have really benefited from a 24/7 service where we could have seen the same nurses whenever we needed them – at nights and weekends and those really difficult moments, but they obviously need more funding and more staff to make that service available.”
A regular donation by direct debit will enable us to recruit more front line staff knowing we have the ongoing income to fund them. This could be a regular gift of £8 a month or two numbers in our lottery.
For more information about the ‘24/7 Hospice at Home’ appeal please visit https://www.ashgatehospicecare.org.uk/ or call our fundraising team on 01246 233404.