Wednesday 21 August 2019

Following our visit to 10 Downing Street last week where we discussed the serious funding challenges faced by hospices across the UK with the Prime Minister, the government last night announced an additional £25 million funding for hospices in England.

Two-thirds of UK hospices are now operating with a deficit due in large part to an unsustainable funding model. Government funding of hospices across the UK varies significantly from 20% to 70%, with Katharine House only receiving 24% last year – a figure that has declined as a proportion of costs in each of the last five years. The hospice relies on fundraising income from the local community for the remaining three-quarters of its income.

Katharine House faces a budgeted deficit of £435,000 and must urgently close this gap, however, the government is yet to release details of how the proposed funding will be distributed across England’s 155 adult hospices.

In response to the announcement, our Chief Executive, Angharad Orchard, said:

“We were delighted to talk directly to the Prime Minister last week, and we welcome that in this announcement he has made a commitment to review hospice funding more strategically in the coming months. The current hospice funding model is inherently unsustainable and urgently needs to be reviewed at a national level to ensure that we can continue to provide care to people in our community.

The £25 million additional funding may provide some relief in the short term for hospices across England, however, it will not solve the funding difficulties we and other hospices face.

We rely on our community to provide three-quarters of our funding, and are very lucky that our community has been our champions for nearly 30 years. We are so grateful for their support, and we know they will continue to go above and beyond to support their local hospice in these challenging times.

We also look forward to working with our local MPs and wider government to agree a more comprehensive and fairer funding structure.”

You can read more about our visit to 10 Downing Street and discussion with Prime Minister Boris Johnson here.