'I desperately needed to know that people cared.'
A mum has shared the ways in which her friends helped her while she was caring for her dying daughter. Vicky Whyte, from
This week saw the launch of new research showing stark variation in palliative care provision across different services and
Demand for end of life care is rising as the population grows. Combine this dynamic with a reduction in funding, patients
Hospices also have an important part to play in raising awareness of the new national commitment to end of life care. Their longstanding expertise in providing quality, compassionate care and their widespread links with organisations across their local communities, means their role will be crucial to help deliver the transformation in care for dying people that the Government desires and which is so urgently needed.
In recent years there has been a string of national reports highlighting persistent failings in care for dying people, whether in terms of the quality of care provided or problems getting the right support.
For Children's Hospice Week the Duchess drew on her experience as a mum.
The Duchess of Cambridge has drawn on her experiences as a mother to write a heartfelt letter praising the work of children's
The hospices themselves simply could not afford to do what we do. Without Lifelites these children, for whom every second counts, would miss out on the opportunities which new technology can bring. Because we look after the equipment, hospice staff can concentrate on doing what they do best; caring for the children and their families.
Choice has become the mantra and the mode of modern daily life. When it comes to personal preferences, whether it concerns
I am well aware, of course, that hospices are by no means alone in excelling in their field. The charity sector as a whole consistently provides world class, specialist support across a range of areas and increasingly fills the gaps of previously State commissioned services.
How much funding do you think charitable hospices get from the NHS and local authorities? It often surprises people to know that hospices for adults receive on average only around a third of their income from statutory sources, while children's hospices receive on average 17%.
Abby was having chemotherapy for a brain tumour for six months until March this year, "it wasn't as successful as we had hoped," she explained to me matter-of-factly, "so I made a treatment choice while I was at Derriford Hospital and decided I wanted to enjoy my time."
This week the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) published a new report Dying Without Dignity featuring a string of shocking cases of poor care experienced by dying people and their families.
While New Year's resolutions are still fresh, many of us have no doubt been looking at how we spend our time and how we can introduce positive changes this year. Time is precious for all of us, but this is especially true for people who are terminally ill. This affects individuals in different ways but many choose to embrace life as fully as possible and indeed are supported to do this by hospices across the country.