Delight as boost in care fund announced

A HOSPICE which cares for children from Portsmouth and the surrounding areas has welcomed a funding boost off the back of a national drive.

Monday, 31st December 2018, 1:30 pm
Updated Thursday, 10th January 2019, 11:19 am

Naomi House & Jacksplace in Hampshire said NHS England's decision to increase its children's hospice grant from £11m to £25m was '˜welcome' and '˜much-needed.'

It follows a campaign spearheaded by the UK children's palliative care charity Together for Short Lives, with significant support from Naomi House & Jacksplace, in which more than 6,500 people joined a call for more sustainable funding for hospices in England.

Dubbed Fund Not Fail, the drive launched last summer and called on the government to increase its children's hospice grant to £25m '“ providing parity between hospices for adults and young people. 

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Mark Smith, chief executive of Naomi House & Jacksplace, said: '˜This is welcome news for Naomi House & Jacksplace and the wider children's hospice sector in England.

'˜Naomi House & Jacksplace are caring for more children and young adults than ever before, and those we care for are increasingly medically complex. In addition we are developing new and innovative services that enable us to reach more families in need of support.

'˜We would like to thank the numerous MPs and government ministers who have visited Naomi House & Jacksplace or attended our parliamentary reception this year.

'˜I am confident they will have been willing champions of this funding increase.' 

As part of the NHS plan additional funding for children's hospices will be available each year over the next five years, increasing by up to £7m a year by 2023/24, if clinical commissioning groups also provide additional match funding.

Naomi House & Jacksplace needs to raise more than £8.5 million each year to deliver a full service, and less than 15 per cent of that income comes from government or statutory funding. 

Across England as a whole, children's hospices received on average 22 per cent of their funding from statutory sources in 2016/17, compared to 33 per cent for adult hospices. 

Based in Winchester, Naomi House a& Jacksplace, opened in 1997, cares for more than 520 local families and provides respite, emergency, end of life and post bereavement care to children, young adults and their families from across Hampshire, Wiltshire, Dorset, Berkshire, West Sussex, Surrey and the Isle of Wight.