Heart of Kent Hospice has seen a significant escalation in referrals from patients who need specialist support for terminal illness, potentially as a result of delays in diagnosis and treatment due to COVID-19. 

Throughout the pandemic, the Hospice has been quick to innovate in order to continue delivering all its services and provide its outstanding, compassionate care to an ever-growing caseload of patients for whom there is no cure for their terminal illness.  

The Hospice’s Inpatient Unit has provided specialist medical and nursing care; and at any one time, their Community Team, Dementia Service and Family Support and Living Well Team has been supporting over 900 patients at home through a mixture of telephone, video consultation, online sessions and home visits.  

While demand has increased, the Hospice has faced additional funding challenges with the cancellation of all traditional fundraising events and the temporary closure of all 14 of their Hospice shops.  

In the face of such unprecedented circumstances, the local community has rallied to respond. The Hospice is particularly grateful to Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust who have generously donated £500,000 to help the Hospice care for patients and their families in the difficult months ahead. This donation will help towards the Hospice’s recovery from the far-reaching effects of the pandemic. 
Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust have been key supporters of Hospice for a number of years, giving generously to the Hospice’s dementia service and the urgent fundraising appeal launched in April 2020.   

Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust’s Chief Executive Jacqueline Rae, said: “We are pleased to make a significant grant to Heart of Kent Hospice in its 30th anniversary year.  We hope that our funds will help to ensure that the Hospice’s specialist teams can continue to provide vital services to patients and families throughout 2021, when sadly the Hospice anticipates that demand will continue to increase as the repercussions of missed diagnoses and treatments become even more evident. 

Sarah Pugh, Chief Executive of Heart of Kent Hospice, said: “The funding from Colyer-Fergusson Charitable Trust has come at a crucial time for the whole team. We expect to see referrals continue to increase throughout this, our 30th anniversary year. Funding is obviously key to ensuring we can respond, but it also gives a great boost to our dedicated colleagues who can see the incredible support we have from the wider community here in Kent. 

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