South Coast Hospice has reluctantly announced the closure of its eight-bed in-patient unit, Kingfisher House.
This tough decision was made by Hospice’s executive board members at the end of its financial year, March 2014, when once again, South Coast Hospice Association, despite every effort, continued to show a financial loss.
Hospice’s inpatient unit has been open since 1994.
Hospice’s Chief Executive Officer Diane van Dyk said: “God willing and future funding permitting, we hope that this is on a temporary basis.”
Van Dyk, however, stressed that South Coast Hospice itself has not closed and will continue to provide palliative care to 460 patients including families and children.
She admitted it’s a major blow.
“Whilst this has come as a blow, as the in-patient unit represents Palliative Care at its best, I urge all our community members who have supported us in so many ways during the past 31 years to continue to give us support and represent us as ambassadors for the work that we do.
“We will be exploring various cost efficient models to enhance the provision of the highest quality of palliative care.
“In all future planning, Doctor Hilton Horsley, the Board Medical Director, Doctor Andre Nell, South Coast Hospice’s Medical officer, together with founder Kath Defilippi and other interested parties will meet to discuss the way forward.
“Saying goodbye to staff has been very difficult and we pay tribute to all our past staff members, volunteers and all those who have been associated with the in-patient unit.”
Van Dyk added that every effort will be made to network even more closely with the local hospitals to promote quality palliative care for patients who need admission.
Quality palliative care and family support will continue under the following programmes: integrated community home-based care; urban and rural orphans and vulnerable children (OVC); day care; grief and bereavement, social work services; MDR-TB; the HWSETA accredited training academy and the newly acquired care and support mobile clinic.