Havens Hospices ramps up support for NHS during Coronavirus

March 31, 2020 by Emily Mertens

Havens Hospice is expanding its care and offering expertise to help reduce pressure on the NHS during the Coronavirus pandemic.

The local charity, which includes Fair Havens adult hospice in Prittlewell and Little Havens for children based in Thundersley, has been working with healthcare partners to try to free up beds in hospitals across Essex.

From Monday 30th March, Fair Havens – which only opened its new hospice to patients at the start of the month (which you can read more about here) – will be opening all 16 beds in a bid to take more patients from the Southend Hospital and within the community who need palliative and supportive care.

This expansion is being supported by Southend CCG and Castle Point and Rochford CCG (Clinical Commissioning Groups).

All social activities at Little Havens have been suspended for children as the government advises them to stay at home where possible but is still open for children who need care at the end of their life. The hospice is also opening up beds for vulnerable children with complex medical and social needs who should be discharged from local hospitals. This move is being supported by the Mid Essex CCG.

Both of these measures will release beds within acute units at the hospital and enable frontline NHS staff to care for the increased number of patients they will see over the coming weeks.

The J’s has suspended face to face home respite visits and many staff are being redeployed to help frontline services. 

Ellie Miller, Director of Care and Executive Nurse at Havens Hospice, has been leading on these conversations with healthcare partners and offering support to local NHS colleagues. She said: “These adjustments to our hospice care will help to support the NHS so they can concentrate on saving lives.

“This is a time of extreme adversity. However, as a Medical Team, we have the utmost faith in every one of our staff to cope with these changes and continue ‘Making every day count’ for those who need us right now.”

Chief Executive of Havens Hospices Steve Smith said: “Although these measures mean a huge change in the way we as a charity, and our staff, operate, put simply this is the right thing to do.

“We are adapting our hospice care almost hourly to the developments both in the local community and within our Havens Hospices family. The fact that we’re balancing our essential core hospice care with supporting our NHS is collaborative working at its finest and we’re all very proud to play our part in national effort against Coronavirus.

“This is only happening because we have skilled, resilient and dedicated people working for the charity, strong relationships with our healthcare partners across Essex and of course kind donations from people which are keeping us afloat.”

Income for Havens Hospices is declining as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak, with all charity shops closed and many public fundraising events postponed.

Steve continues: “It is tough for us, like all other charities right now. With around 80% of our income coming from donations, the immediate impact and long term effect is still uncertain.

“The demand for our care is growing, just as our income is decreasing. But we trust that our community will continue supporting Havens Hospices like they always do.”


This article features the following businesses:

Havens Hospice - Hospice

Havens Hospice - Hospice

Havens Hospice is a Charity that cares for people who are terminally ill in Westcliff-on-Sea

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