Wigan and Leigh Hospice response to Hospice UK findings

13 December 2017

Nearly three quarters of UK adults (73 per cent) say hospice services should be used more to help relieve the pressure on hospitals according to newly released findings of a survey published on Tuesday (December 12th) by the charity Hospice UK.

And less than half of adults in the UK (47 per cent) say hospitals are "well-equipped" to provide end of life care according to the survey conducted by ComRes.

However, three quarters of those surveyed (75 per cent) say that partnerships between the NHS and hospices improve the quality of care in hospital.

The survey indicates there is keen public appetite for more collaboration between the NHS and the UK's 220 charitable hospices.

In Wigan Borough charity Wigan and Leigh Hospice plays a huge role in relieving pressure on hospitals.

Dr Alan Baron, Chief Executive of Wigan and Leigh Hospice, said: "Over the last 12 months our Inpatient Unit had over 270 admissions and provided over 4,700 nights of care. Many of these patients would have been in hospital if they weren't with us.

"Additionally, our community nursing teams cared for over 900 people with a life-limiting illness in their own home over the last 12 months. Our Hospice In Your Home team looks after patients in the last few weeks of life while our Hospice Nurse Specialists provide advice and support to patients, which includes prescribing medication. Care provided by both of these teams means patients are staying at home rather than going into hospital."

Wigan and Leigh Hospice also has a 24/7 telephone advice line which potentially prevents patients going to A&E because they or their loved ones can talk to a trained member of staff about their symptoms or concerns at any time of day.

Furthermore, the Hospice In Your Care Home team is actively working with care homes to reduce hospital admissions. An independent evaluation of the Hospice In Your Care Home service by Lancaster University found that since the team began working with Borough nursing homes there had been a 25% reduction* in unnecessary hospital admissions of their residents.

* from 234 to 176 admissions in a comparable 6 month period between 2015 and 2016

• For the survey ComRes interviewed 2120 UK adults online between 7 and 8 August. Data were weighted by gender, region and socio-economic grade to be representative of all UK adults aged 18+. The newly released survey findings will be available on the ComRes website from December 12.
• Around 250,000 people die in hospital each year in England. They include many people approaching the end of life who have no clinical need to be there and would prefer to be supported in their own home or in a hospice.
• Hospice UK is the national charity for hospice and palliative care.


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