Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Help the Hospices Conference - New commissioning environment

Thomas Hughes-Hallett's presentation  described how many private companies are now working in end of life and palliative care and could be in direct competition with hospices, he challenged the audience to consider the following:
  • Virgin Assura runs healthcare in Surrey 
  • Allied Health has now been taken over by Saga in end of life care in Oxford. SAGA will have 20,000 staff caring for chronically ill, dementia care and end of life care by Christmas 2011
  • Primecare is working in Nene Valley delivering end of life and palliative care
  • PCT allocation per dying person varies between £150 and £6,000 
  • Whether it is time for hospices to share back room resources e.g. training, IT etc.
  • It may become legal right for people at end of life to have their needs assessed and their care coordinated
  • Marie Curie is working in partnership with Cancer Research processing research applications 
Some Hospices are responding to this changing climate and the need for more income by establishing social enterprises or community interest companies, some of which are delivering home care (like a care agency). One session heard from Martletts and Matt Knop about the setting up of such companies and the support available. Perhaps before diversifying, hospices first need to ensure that their current business of delivering services is running as efficiently as possible and that all income funding streams are as profitable as possible. 

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