News News Hospice Care Week Did you know? This week is Hospice Care Week, so we’re taking this opportunity to recognise and celebrate what it takes to provide hospice care. There are more than 200 hospices across the UK that work with and within local communities to support individuals and families with end-of-life care. With the world dealing with the effects of COVID-19, expert end-of-life care is more important now than ever before. We know first hand that it’s the little differences you can make in someone’s life that offer the greatest impact. We strive to create lasting memories and moments for our patients and their families, whether that’s in their own homes or in the Inpatient Unit at the hospice. Last winter Richard and his family were told not to expect to see in the new year after an emergency visit to hospital. Richard’s illness was in its final stages, and all he really wanted was to watch a game of football with his son. When he arrived at Katharine House, the staff did everything they could so that one of his final wishes could come true. They rallied around to get the right TV and network broadcasting provider so that Richard and his son could do what they enjoyed most, watching the football together. This is what it takes to provide hospice care. Helen Fletcher, Head of the Inpatient Unit, said: “It was an honour to be able to help make every moment matter and enable Richard and his son to watch the football match on New Year’s Day. It may not seem like much, but these small ‘realities’ are what makes life enjoyable, those little things that we treasure most.” Since the lockdown started, the hospice’s Community Nurse Specialists have made more than 2,337 patient and carer telephone calls, 915 healthcare professional calls, and sent over 522 emails, to ensure their patients and their families could get the right care and support they needed throughout this difficult time. This is what it takes to provide hospice care. Katharine House also has over 350 regular volunteers, who help at the hospice as well as in the charity shops and in the community. The volunteers save the hospice around £445,000 a year - the hospice really couldn’t continue with their work without them. This is what it takes to provide hospice care. When Rob was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, he became a patient at Katharine House. Rob and Barbara knew they wanted to be ‘married’ before he died, so the staff at Katharine House made it happen. Rob and Barbara wanted the ceremony to take place at Katharine House, as Rob said he felt privileged to be a patient. “The people at Katharine House are faultless, they are caring, compassionate, loving and always have a smile. Whenever I am back the nurses say they have missed me, and it is such a boost, so much more than medication.” Whether it’s enabling a couple to get married before their most difficult journey, for a patient to say one last goodbye to their favourite canine companion, or giving a father and son the gift of watching a football game together, it’s the little things the staff do, alongside all of the medical care and support, that allow them to make every moment matter for our patients and their families. This is what it takes to provide hospice care.