In April this year, we formed a partnership with Oxford University Hospitals Foundation Trust (OUH) to protect the services that we provide to our communities. Without the partnership, we were in danger of losing the inpatient unit at the hospice and being forced to close essential elements of our services.

We are immensely proud to be working with such a well-respected organisation as the NHS. The recent pandemic has enforced just how important an institution it is to the UK and how tirelessly everyone works to ensure patients are cared for and supported – something extremely close to our heart here at Katharine House.

Since the partnership, we have received a few enquiries as to what affect this has had on our fundraising needs.

Here we hope to address any misconceptions that may have arisen from the change of management to our clinical team.

Do you need donations and fundraising now that you are in partnership with the NHS?

 The NHS has always provided some level of funding towards Katharine House. With the new partnership, this contribution has increased but we still need to raise more than 50% towards the cost of providing our services for people affected by life-limiting illnesses. We rely exclusively on the donations and fundraising given to us by the community, along with the money raised in our shops, to cover these costs.

The need for our services is at an all-time high and we are on track to providing care for more people than ever before. To ensure we can grow and support the increase in people needing palliative care, we need donations now more than ever before.

Is Katharine House now part of the NHS?

Katharine House is not part of the NHS. It is being run in partnership with the NHS and is still a charity in its own right. We enjoy the benefits of being in partnership with a well-respected institution like the NHS, but we remain very much our own entity. Our aim is to ensure that the quality of care remains the same incredibly high standard that our community knows and expects.

Will donations now be absorbed into the trust funds rather than for the sole and direct use of Katharine House Hospice?

All money donated to Katharine House goes directly and entirely towards the hospice and cannot be used for any other purpose, as part of our agreement with OUH Trust. 

Does the partnership mean there will be limited space for locals at the hospice, with patients coming from all over the UK?

Over 92% of the patients we have cared for at the hospice since the partnership came from our catchment area, with the majority of these being from Oxfordshire. Our priority is, and will continue to be, caring for people in North Oxfordshire, South Northamptonshire and South Warwickshire.

Occasionally, if we have the capacity to do so, we will agree to take on patients from other nearby hospices that don’t have enough beds or staff, to ensure that vulnerable people do not miss out on vital care.

Has the inpatient unit lost its soul? Is it being run like a hospital?

Katharine House is an incredibly special place that was created to provide a holistic approach to patient care, considering the physical, emotional, social and spiritual needs of an individual.

This core purpose remains as integral now as it ever has. We continue to provide so much more than a hospital, not only aiming to manage pain or meet the medical needs of a patients, but to help them make the most of the time they have left.

Our additional services include therapies, one-to-one care, relaxation classes, delicious specially cooked meals, bereavement support, health walks, arts and crafts, and much more.

We have helped people hold special anniversary ceremonies, spend precious moments with a beloved pet and arranged TV subscriptions so a father and son could watch a final football match together. We aim to provide fun and laughter and help people make special memories.

Does Katharine House actually need money? Isn’t it cash rich?

We constantly struggle to raise the money needed to ensure the survival of Katharine House. Our fundraising and retail teams work flat out to ensure that donations keep coming into our hospice. The support we receive from our communities continues to be absolutely fundamental to our survival.

Katharine House Hospice