Hospice day therapy staff have been engaging with the homeless community via local services who support them, enabling those who have a life limiting condition(s) the equal opportunity to take control of their lives through the support of our specialist palliative rehabilitation service regardless of their homeless status.
Our aim is to optimise a person’s physical function and emotional wellbeing, consistent with their choice, goals and priorities. We work together with patients and those who are important to them using our expertise, to equip them with new tools to maximise wellbeing.
The majority of patients that we care for who are part of this vulnerable and marginalised community, usually present with underlying mental health illnesses and may have alcohol and/or drug addictions. They experience significant ill health and the average age of death is 47 years.
It can be difficult for these people to engage with our services, due to their transient life styles and their psychological and emotional problems. The holistic assessment can be completed at point of contact or at the Day Therapy Centre. If patients do not attend with consent we continue to have contact with their support worker, housing officer.
Other members of staff and students are invited to attend from the Trust. This highlights to other professionals the ongoing difficulties that these patients have and proves that as a Hospice Trust we are committed to making our service accessible, demonstrating the diverse groups that we support.
With monthly engagement with the services we have forged strong professional relationships with support workers/housing officers and managers and referrals are starting to increase.
Statistics Mean = May 2015–May 2016 monthly contact/discussion with 10 service users
Service users who accessed the centre during this period = 5
Service users who engaged at point of contact = 4.
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