Although visiting places of care has been difficult in recent times due to Covid, Dr Dan Poulter was today delighted to pay a visit to the St. Elizabeth Hospice in Ipswich.
Dr Poulter very much enjoyed talking with the Chief Executive Judi Newman, where he was met with great enthusiasm for the development of an End-of-Life Co-ordination Hub. They also discussed the challenges of fundraising which must balance ensuring hospices can stay open, with retaining their independence. The Hospice provides absolutely vital care and is well respected by the community. They currently have 1600 volunteers carefully managed alongside a stable core of clinical staff. Much of the care offered is now off-site where they run very successful ‘virtual wards’ through the Hospice-at-Home plan.
St. Elizabeth Hospice has been developing the Zest programme since 2015, working closely with children’s hospice services such as each, to ensure young adults have a smooth transition into adult care. Zest supports young adults aged 14 and upwards with progressive and incurable illnesses to ensure that they get the specialist care, tailored treatment and services they need to be able to enjoy life to the full. Judi Newman described this as, ‘a real Ipswich success story.’
Dr Poulter then enjoyed a tour of the facilities, meeting and talking with staff and service users on his way. The Hospice has recently been refreshed with a brand new café area for patients and visitors.
Commenting on the visit, Dr Poulter said, ‘The Zest programme is highly commendable, as a doctor I am pleased to see this kind of compassionate, transitional care model in place and working well.’