Our Response to COVID-19

Our Response to COVID-19

20 Aug 2020

News and Updates

The last few months have been a time of change beyond all imagining for everyone at the Hospice, our community and the world beyond. As part of the St Peter’s family we wanted to share with you how the crisis has impacted us and what it means for our future.

What happened during lockdown?
During lockdown the need for our services and care increased considerably but delivering that care has got harder. Increasingly complex PPE requirements, changing rules over shielding and visitors and pressure on the NHS have inevitably impacted our teams and they have risen to the challenge admirably. But heartbreakingly we have seen higher levels of anxiety within our patients and their loved ones and the real trauma of isolation within our community at a time when no one should be alone.

How have services been affected/what did you have to change?
We have responded to this by upping staff on our 24/7 advice line and increased our support for the NHS, care homes, prisons and other hubs of infection who take care of patients with life limiting illnesses. Our community teams have found new ways to support patients virtually, as well as continue to visit them at home.

What has been the impact on your funding?
Like many other charities, we have taken a large hit to our funding which will impact us for the foreseeable future. Our 51 shops have been closed (although they are now slowly beginning to reopen) and many of our fundraising activities have been postponed or cancelled.

81% of our running costs are raised in the community so this has been devastating. We do have reserves to fall back on for a rainy day. However, we are not facing just a rainy day. It’s a perfect storm.

We know now that the costs to run our services for 2020 will far outstrip our funding and we estimate a loss of at least £2million this year. And that’s with a fair wind and no further storms. In reality, this figure could be even higher.

How are you mitigating against a loss of income?
We have already temporarily closed 3 beds in the In Patient Unit and our Day Services will be closed for the medium term. These decisions were driven by both economic and safety factors but sadly we know that these will not be the last hard choices.

Right now we are planning for the future and exploring every option for how our community can contribute, we’re mindful of the ongoing restrictions you are facing and we will share more as our path forward becomes clearer.

What are the risks to services?
Put simply, a loss of this size means our services are at risk. We know this is the last thing you want to hear, but we want to be open with you about the reality of what we are facing, which is making significant reductions to the level of support and care we can offer.

Find out more

To find out more about how the Hospice has been affected read our latest newsletter.

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