Hospice @Home celebrate its 5th Anniversary - East Cheshire Hospice

Hospice @Home celebrate its 5th Anniversary

Caring for patients in the comfort of their own home was started by East Cheshire Hospice five years ago this month.

Its Hospice @Home service has been an overwhelming success during that time, expanding greatly to meet the needs of the community.

An initial team of six has grown to more than 25, including nurses, health care assistants, co-ordinators and bank staff. Home visits are made in cars painted in blue Hospice colours.

From left, Hospice @Home clinical co-ordinator Gill Tomlinson, manager Tess Cleaver and health care assistant Joanne Helm.

Figures show that since October 2017 staff have –

* Received 1,830 referrals.

* Made 14,400 home visits.

* Helped 1,028 people to die in their preferred place of death, either at home, or in the Hospice.

* Taken 1,107 SOS phone calls from users, possibly avoiding call-outs, ambulance visits, or hospital admissions.

* Made 6,036 planned phone calls to users, saving similar trips.

* Made 150 night sits.

Hospice @Home began as an out-of-hours rapid response service for patients in the last two weeks of life, later extended to 12 weeks.

It supported patients overnight and at weekends where access to health care professionals was limited. It also offered ad hoc care for patients with little or no package of care wishing to stay at home as long as possible.

A gap in regular care provision was identified in certain places, often due to locality and availability of care agencies in those areas.

That led to a day service, beginning in April 2020, providing high quality packages of care to patients rapidly deteriorating and thought to be entering a terminal phase.

Staffing levels were increased significantly to provide this round-the-clock service.

Meanwhile, carer breaks were introduced in January 2021, giving respite for carers of loved ones in the last six months of life.

Fifth birthday celebrations for the Hospice @Home service. Manager Tess Cleaver (left) with clinical co-ordinator Gill Tomlinson.

The Hospice is also now the East Cheshire hub for Palliative Care in Partnership, assessing patient suitability for community-based fast track care applications.

Since April, this hub project has provided night care in collaboration with Marie Curie, with an average of five night sits a week.

Hospice @Home Manager Tess Cleaver said: “I’m proud of what our exceptional team have achieved over the last five years. Everyone is so invested in providing excellent care tailored to each individual.

“Importantly, we’re part of a much wider healthcare network and close co-ordination with other community services is vital. We strive to provide high quality care and always learn from feedback to further improve our services.”

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