Katharine House Hospice respond to budget promise

Katharine House Hospice chief executive Angharad Orchard NNL-190826-122839001
Katharine House Hospice chief executive Angharad Orchard NNL-190826-122839001

Earlier this month a team from Adderbury’s Katharine House Hospice were invited to Number 10 to talk with Prime Minister Boris Johnson about the funding crisis facing the country’s end of life care providers.

Since the meeting the PM has vowed to inject an additional £25 million of funding for hospices in England.

The Katharine House Hospice team outside Number 10

The Katharine House Hospice team outside Number 10

The government, however, the government is yet to release details of how the proposed funding will be distributed across England’s 155 adult hospices.

Katharine House faces a budgeted deficit of £435,000 in 2019/20 and must urgently close this gap.

Katharine House Hospice 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 25 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.

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

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 per cent to 70 per cent, with Katharine House only receiving 24 per cent last year – a figure that has declined as a proportion of costs in each of the last five years.

The hospice’s fundraising team are tasked with generating the funds needed in ever increasingly unusual ways.

In addition to the hospice’s annual favourites such as the Santa Run and the Midnight Walk they have introduced quirkier fundraisers such as the Fire Walk over hot coals and a sponsored sky dive which takes place September 28 at Hinton Airfield.

The next fundraiser will be an ABBA extravaganza at the General Foods Social Club on Septembe7.

To sign up or find out more visit www.khh.org.uk.