Hospice opens up bed space to ease pressure on hospitals during Covid pandemic
OAKHAVEN Hospice has opened four extra beds to take patients from under-pressure NHS hospitals battling the pandemic.
The Pennington charity will be taking in people who have tested negative for Covid-19 and are medically fit for discharge but still require support.
The initiative is being taken in partnership with the West Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Group and follows Lymington hospital opening a second coronavirus ward, as reported in the A&T.
Andrew Ryde, Oakhaven chief executive, said: “It is essential that we support our community and our NHS colleagues during this time and by opening these beds we are helping to relieve some of the pressure currently faced by hospitals.”
The four NHS beds are in addition to the 10 spaces the hospice has kept open for end-of-life care, having added to the eight previously in service. The increase has resulted in a need for more staff.
Donna Wilkins, director of people services at the hospice, said: “The level of support we have received has been phenomenal from our current staff, our wonderful volunteers, our ex-colleagues as well as from qualified nurses who have picked up our plea on social media.
“So many people have expressed their desire to help, either with extra hours, volunteering, returning to work, or taking on additional duties to help the hospice throughout this time.
“It is only with this support that we have been able to increase our bedded care.”
The hospice has remained open throughout the coronavirus crisis, although with restrictions on travel many patients have chosen to remain at home being cared for by their families supported by Oakhaven’s community teams.
Oakhaven is also facing financial difficulties with the lockdown as every month the hospice shops are closed represents a loss of approximately £100,000 in income.
To donate, visit www.oakhavenhospice.co.uk