The chancellor has announced hundreds of millions of pounds in extra funding for hospices, charities and the St. John Ambulance as the coronavirus pandemic continues.
Speaking yesterday (8 April), Rishi Sunak announced a £750m pot for charities across the country, including £360m direct from various Whitehall department.
The chancellor said the £360m would be allocated to hospices to help increase stability, the St. Johns Ambulance, Citizens Advice and charities which help vulnerable children and victims of domestic abuse.
In addition, £370m would be made available for small and medium-sized charities through a grant to the National Lottery Community Fund.
‘Hospices have suffered a huge challenge to their funding due to the outbreak of coronavirus but at the same time continued to play a vital role in delivering compassionate, quality end-of-life care for many people,’ said health secretary, Matt Hancock.
‘I am delighted that this cash boost will provide further financial stability and support them to increase capacity of NHS Services and provide stability as we manage our response to coronavirus.
‘It’s vitally important we all continue to support our fantastic and hardworking hospices and their staff during this unprecedented time, and the whole country is grateful for the incredible work they do.’
The chief executive of national charity Hospice UK, Tracey Bleakley, added: ‘Hospices are on the frontline of providing care and support to almost a quarter of a million vulnerable people every year at the end of their lives.
‘This unprecedented funding recognises the vital role that hospices play in supporting the NHS in its fight against COVID-19, and means hospices across the country can keep providing beds, specialist clinical care and staffing to relieve pressure on the NHS at this critical moment,’ added Ms Bleakley.
‘Hospices depend on the generosity of their local communities to care for people and families affected by terminal illness. This incredible government support is very welcome but it’s still important that people continue to support their local hospice.
‘Hospice UK is working with the NHS to disburse this much-needed funding as soon as possible so we can continue to protect the most vulnerable people in our country during this national emergency.’
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