Final plans for replacing St Clare's Hospice due to be ready by July 2021, say chiefs
Final plans for a new hospice service in South Tyneside could be confirmed in just a few months, according to NHS chiefs.
Families have been promised a ‘homely’ setting in a ‘calm and dignified environment’.
The move will bring a dedicated hospice-style facility back to the borough following the closure of Jarrow’s St Clare’s Hospice, which collapsed into insolvency in 2019.
But campaigners have demanded a return to the former St Clare’s Hospice, in Jarrow.
“I had hoped to be able to give a full update on the end of life model, but we’re not in a position to do that quite yet,” said Matt Brown, director of operations at South Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).
“We are just about to sign off the formal service specification with the clinical model and final costings, but we haven’t been able to do that [yet].”
Brown was speaking at a meeting of South Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group’s (CCG) governing body on Thursday, May 27, which was held by videolink and broadcast via Facebook.
In November 2020 he predicted the new services would be ‘up and running’ by April this year, but also cautioned the process could be delayed by the coronavirus pandemic.
South Tyneside has been without its own end of life service since St Clare’s was forced to close its doors almost two years ago.
Haven Court is based in its own separate area of the South Tyneside District Hospital site, is purpose-built to provide care services and has a private garden, its own separate car park and entrance.
A total of four bedrooms were agreed, with a dedicated family and carer suite with catering facilities.
The CCG also aims to develop services such as physio and occupational therapies, complementary therapies, counselling and a chaplaincy service.
The CCG is due to meet again on Thursday, June 3, for its annual meeting, but an update on palliative care plans is not expected to be ready until its subsequent meeting, on July 29.