We know that every person is different. You and your family will have unique needs and wishes. Your journey will therefore be different. If you use our services, we’ll put in place the best support we can for you as an individual. 

The Community Nurse Specialist team

In the first instance, most people will be referred to our Community Nurse Specialist (CNS) team, or sometimes to our hospital palliative care team.

One of our Katharine House CNSs will visit you at home. The first visit may take quite a long time as your Katharine House nurse will talk to you to gain an understanding of who you are and what your current needs and wishes are. It’s also a chance to understand how those closest to you are coping and if they need any help. People often find it helpful to talk to someone who understands their situation and knows what health and social care is available to meet different needs.

Your Katharine House nurse will then keep in touch in person or via telephone, and will be able to support you and give advice on your medicines and treatments. Your nurse will also liaise with your GP and district nurse as well as your hospital consultant to ensure that you get the best ongoing treatment. 

You can also talk to your nurse about your emotional, social and spiritual needs, as well as those of your close family and friends. You can discuss whether you or your family would benefit from additional support in these areas.

If your symptoms should get difficult then your Katharine House nurse will liaise with your GP and our medical and inpatient teams. We may be able to offer you an outpatient appointment with one of our doctors or a bed for symptom management admission. 

Inpatient services at the hospice

If you come to stay with us, your care will be led by a doctor who is a consultant in palliative medicine and you would receive 24-hour nursing from our team of expert nurses in our inpatient unit

When your symptoms have become more manageable again you would be discharged home and your nurse will continue to look after you there.  

We do also admit some people for end-of-life care if the patient, family and health care professionals involved agree this is appropriate for the individual patient.

Some people come to the hospice once, some several times, and many never come in at all. Sometimes an outpatient appointment with one of our consultants is enough to support your symptom management. These outpatient appointments usually happen at the hospice, but occasionally the consultant will visit you at home.

The Living Well service

You might benefit from visiting our Living Well service, where you will have extra support from a specialist nurse and a team of nurses and volunteers. You can enjoy a freshly prepared meal and take part in activities such as arts and crafts, complementary therapies and quizzes.

There is also a range of specialists on hand to offer you extra support at the hospice including a social worker, lymphoedema practitioner, chaplain, and physiotherapist.

Visiting Living Well gives the person caring for you a little time to themselves, so they can have a day with friends, or go shopping, knowing that you are in a safe environment with the care you need.

How we work with others

Our team work closely with other professionals who have an input into your care, such as local GPs, consultants, and district nurses.

We can keep them up to date with things like changes you agree to regarding your care or medication regime. We can also let them know about referrals, appointments and other communications so that you can focus on yourself.

If you're going for an outpatient appointment with your hospital consultant, our Katharine House clinical nurse specialist can ring them to let them know your concerns so that nothing gets missed when you see the consultant. The doctors and nurses at the hospice also communicate regularly with your GP if you have been to an outpatient appointment or have been an inpatient at the hospice.

Our team keep in touch with hospices and national palliative care organisations across the country to ensure that the very best practice is being delivered.