Essential end of life care within people’s homes is being rapidly expanded across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough after a partnership decision to fast track the expansion of Hospice at Home services in response to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, North West Anglia Foundation Trust, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, East of England Ambulance, local authorities, Healthwatch and patient representatives have been working together with palliative care providers Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice and Arthur Rank Hospice Charity for several months to transform and expand end of life care, catering for the counties’ palliative healthcare needs.
When the pandemic hit partnership efforts were fast-tracked, in tandem with the healthcare services’ efforts to keep people out of hospital wherever possible and increase the quality of care received at home.
Hospice at Home teams provide specialist hands-on care and support in people’s homes or usual place of residence when they are approaching the end of their life. The expanded service will be available day and night, giving patients and families specialist support at a very difficult time.
As part of the expansion plans, access to Hospice at Home care will be increased over the coming months, with the aim of having a full service in place by the end of January 2021 giving around the clock palliative care day and night to people at home in Peterborough and Cambridgeshire.
An extensive recruitment drive is taking place and teams of healthcare assistants and nurses are now in place in Peterborough and Fenland and East Cambridgeshire, with Arthur Rank Hospice Charity expanding its service to Cambridgeshire City and South Huntingdonshire too.
Patients and families are much more able to cope with the support of a Hospice at Home service:
“We wouldn’t have been able to care for dad at home without your help and kindness. We are feeling so fortunate to have been able to have had that time with him.” (Family quote provided by Arthur Rank Hospice Charity).
To discuss being referred to Hospice at Home services, speak to a healthcare professional: referrals can be made by local GPs, District Nurses, local hospitals and other hospice service teams. To find out more visit arhc.org.uk/ hospiceathome/ or sueryder.org/thorpe