10 things you might not know about St Richard’s Hospice

12th November 2015

Many people who visit St Richard’s or hear a talk about our services are surprised at the wide range of support we offer patients and their loved ones. Here are a few facts and figures about our hospice, some of which might just surprise you!

1. All of our services are completely free to patients and their families. We are able to provide compassionate care for patients with life-threatening illnesses and support their families thanks to the generous support of the community through regular giving, fundraising, hospices lottery and donating or buying pre-loved items in our shops. Only 25% of our income comes from the NHS.

2. Many people think that a hospice is a place where you go to die, but in fact the majority of our patients are cared for at home, where we help them to manage their symptoms and care for them at home during their final days if this is their wish. Last year, our Hospice at Home team provided specialist nursing care to 489 patients.

3. Last year 303 patients stayed for 4,429 nights on the In-patient Unit, 43% of people staying for 1-7 days and 21% for 1-2 weeks. 25% of patients were discharged home where they continued to receive care and support from our community team.

4. Families are welcome to visit their loved one while they are staying in our In-patient Unit at any time of the day or night and we have had some unusual visitors, including pet dogs and horses. Our family bedroom enables families to remain close to their loved one overnight.

5. Our hospice kitchen creates delicious meals, deserts and celebration cakes. Last year we dished up around 15,000 dinners, lunches and snacks. Each year we use 57,200 tea bags, 8,760 pints of milk and 3,000 loaves of bread. A cookery group for carers who have recently been bereaved offers a chance to learn or rekindle practical cooking skills and social support.

6. 44,938 individuals and businesses are registered on our supporter database and raised £2.1million last year to help us care. We email regular update newsletters to keep supporters informed about the difference their contributions make to our patients and families, and invite them to upcoming events.

7. Each week, over 44,000 items of donated clothing, books and household items are sorted by our warehouse team and chain of 18 shops process 6,000 customer transactions.

8. We offer bereavement support to families for as long as they need us. On average our family support team receive 140 referrals for support each month for counselling, social work, CAB advice, and bereavement and group support for children and adults. Last year, 1,364 individuals were supported by our Family Support Team and our Dragonfly Group offered specialist care and social support to 46 bereaved children and young people and their parent.

9. Our care is underpinned by a dedicated army of over 1,000 volunteers. Last year, volunteers donated 146,172 hours of time, equivalent to saving the charity £1,060,988 on salaries (based on minimum wage). During the last year, 72 new volunteers joined our dedicated and skilled team, working in our shops, administrative functions and patient services.

10. Our chaplain service offers non-denominational spiritual support for people of any or no religion. Our Sacred Space offers patients and visitors time out to reflect, light a candle or say a prayer. Each month, 1,000 tea light candles are lit in our Sacred Space.


Coronavirus (COVID-19)

During this challenging time, we are doing our utmost to continue caring for the patients and loved ones who need us most.

The way we work has been adapted, with many of our services delivered remotely – such as over the phone, or by video call. And we are working closely with other health care professionals in Worcestershire to share knowledge and expertise at this time.

Latest changes at St Richard’s Hospice

  • In-patient Unit: It is with great sadness that due to stringent infection control measures, we are required to restrict visiting and cannot offer the comprehensive level of service in the way we usually do. However, we will still do our utmost to make sure that each patient and loved one is given the compassion and dignity they deserve. To help families stay in touch we are encouraging virtual visiting using technology such as video calls and apps. This will be discussed and explained to patients and families on admission and we can help provide access to equipment in the hospice. In addition, the IPU nursing team will liaise with each patient and family to arrange short daily visits from the patient's closest loved one and compassionate visiting, as appropriate. Read the full details here.
  • Community Nursing: Community services continue to operate, with a mixture of hands-on care and remote support.
  • Living Well and Family Support Services: Switched to virtual model, with care given remotely over the phone or via video call.
  • Shops: All 19 of our shops and warehouse are temporarily closed. Please do not leave donations outside our shops, as we are unable to collect them at this time.
  • Fundraising: All hospice organised events until the end of August have been postponed. If you wish to support us, please donate to our Resilience Fund.

Please do not visit St Richard’s Hospice if you have a high temperature or new, continuous cough. If you have these symptoms, please stay at home and self-isolate for seven days. See NHS advice on coronavirus.

Thank you for your support and understanding at this difficult time.