Foyle Hospice working with 220 patients at a time

Donal Henderson, Chief Executive, Foyle Hospice.
Donal Henderson, Chief Executive, Foyle Hospice.

Staff at the Foyle Hospice are working with around 220 patients with life-limiting cancers and other illnesses at any one time, it’s Chief Executive has revealed.

Donal Henderson said the local hospice was now offering a range of services for people with cancer.

Speaking to the ‘Journal’ at a recent Pink Ladies World Cancer Day event at the City Hotel, Mr Henderson said:

“The key services would be the inpatient unit, our day hospice services, which is three days a week, and we have our community nursing team- there’s six members of staff who go out into the community and meet patients in their own homes.

“There’s adult and children bereavement services and the 24 hour Advice Line, 028 71351010, which is a service people are probably less familiar with. That would be for anyone concerned about their medication or if there is a carer needing support in trying to manage pain. That’s for cancer and other life-limiting illnesses.”

Mr Henderson said that there was a lot of joined up working now between local groups, with the hospice linking directly to communities via projects including the Compassionate Communities befriending and reach out serviced for people at the end of their lives who need support in their own homes. “We have quite a number of volunteers trained now and quite a number of GPs referrals,” he said.

“The perception of the hospice has always been ‘last resort’, but two thirds of our patients will come in for respite care and will return home.”