Organisation:St Francis Hospice DublinCategory:Large OrganisationsCharity Reg no. :200271931. Tell us about the issue(s) this organisation is tackling and why it's important
2. How does your organisation go about tackling these issues?
- Why was the organisation set up? What is it trying to change or do? Why is it important to do this? St Francis Hospice Dublin was established in 1989 to provide specialist palliative care for the people of North Dublin City and County. Prior to that, people from North Dublin had to travel to Harold’s Cross to access palliative care. Specialist palliative care brings comfort, dignity, quality of life and holistic person-centred care to people facing a life limiting illness, and their families. A challenge for St Francis Hospice has been to expand our services to respond to the needs of people with all life limiting illnesses. When we were founded, nearly all our patients had a cancer diagnosis, and today about one in four of our patients has a different diagnosis, such as motor neurone disease, COPD, congestive heart failure, and others.
3. Tell us about a case where the organisation has made a positive difference.
- Explain your organisation's approach to solving the issues you identified in your previous answer. If it has had to adapt its activities in response to COVID-19, how did it do this? Patients and families have different needs which can change over time, so we offer: • Community palliative care (care at home) • Outpatient services • Hospice day care • Inpatient care (for symptom management/respite or for end of life care) • Bereavement support We practice interdisciplinary teamwork to provide holistic care across the different areas of our service. Each individual and each professional role contributes to the overall care of each patient and family accessing our services. We collaborate with external agencies such as the HSE (for funding), as well as healthcare professionals working in hospitals, nursing homes, community services, and GP surgeries throughout our catchment area. This ensures the best possible person-centred care for our patients and their families.
4. What has the overall impact of this work been and how do you measure it?
- This is your chance to talk about impact in qualitative terms. Provide a case study to illustrate the impact of the organisation’s work. We will accept anonymous case studies if you need to protect the identity of a service user or individuals under 18 years of age. You can include a quote or endorsement if you wish.Aisling Keavey is 47 and lives with her husband Peter and their 15-year-old daughter, Emma Louise. In 2019, Aisling was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer which had also spread to her spine. The family experienced a great deal of confusion and upset, wondering where to turn. When they were referred to St Francis Hospice, they found the helping hand they needed. Aisling was able to attend the hospice for complementary therapies, nursing assessments, and other supports, such as the creation of blister packs to help her keep track of her many new and unfamiliar medications. When Covid-19 hit, Aisling was able to avail of support at home, such as the PEER programme (Palliative Enablement, Exercise and Rehabilitation) provided by the phyiotherapy and Occupational Therapy teams. When needed, home visits were arranged for additional support. When Aisling reached a point where she no longer needed the active input of St Francis Hospice, she was discharged from the service, in the knowledge that the door is open to return at any time should she require any aspects of the care the hospice provides. Aisling said of St Francis Hospice Dublin, “You never feel a burden, you are the main priority for them no matter what you are going through. Everybody should take up on it, given the opportunity. Everyone should take the opportunity with both hands, because it really will make your life so much easier.”
5. What makes your organisation special?
- How would you describe the overall impact of your organisation’s work? What measures do you use to know if you have been successful at achieving your goals? How do you know what to improve or change in your work? Please include as much evidence as possible to demonstrate your impact. In 32 years of service to the people of North Dublin and surrounding counties, St Francis Hospice has directly impacted the lives of approx 200,000 people including patients and their family members/friends. In 2020, we cared for nearly 1,800 individuals and their family members/friends. When Covid-19 impacted Ireland, we quickly adapted our services to continue providing vital care to patients and their families in as safe a way as possible. Approximately 1 in 3 people who die in our catchment area each year are under our care; most people choose to die at home if this is at all possible. In 2020, 36% of our patients who died were being cared for in one of our hospice inpatient units, while 53% were enabled to remain at home (43%) or in their nursing home (10%) with the support of our community palliative care team. One family described their Community Palliative Care nurse as “an amazing advocate and pal to Mary. She trusted and depended on him. He made the last ten months of Mary’s life bearable and lovely, giving her his presence, understanding and care. It gave her such peace and transformed the time she had left.” Another family member posted on social media, “Thank you so much to all the nursing and physio staff in St Francis Hospice. You helped my mum to stay at home before she passed. You treated her with such warmth and care while having a lovely sense of humour. We will be forever grateful. Thank you so much for all you do in granting people dignity in dying."
6. How can the public support your work?
- What is the organisation’s unique selling-point? What makes the organisation different from others working in the same field/area?St Francis Hospice Dublin is a values-led organisation. Our six core values of Dignity, Respect, Compassion, Collaboration, Excellence and Kindness are at the centre of all our care, decision making and policies. One point of uniqueness is that St Francis Hospice Dublin does not accept payment of any kind, including health insurance, for any of our services. This means that equitable access to our services is guaranteed. All referrals are assessed on the same medical and psychosocial needs basis, and individuals are prioritised based on these criteria only.
7. Describe how your organisation is transparent and accountable
- Do you need volunteers? Do you fundraise? Can the public share your story? Give them a call to action.St Francis Hospice Dublin needs to raise €4.5 million each year to fund our day to day services and repay capital debts associated with the building of our hospice facility in Blanchardstown. Our Fundraising Team coordinates several yearly campaigns, all of which are currently virtual events due to Covid-19, and supports individuals who wish to organise their own fundraising events. We welcome the support of the North Dublin community and beyond. We encourage people to follow us on social media, make a donation, or become involved in fundraising campaigns. St Francis Hospice Dublin relies on the services of more than 300 volunteers, who work across 44 different roles, including hospitality, transportation, gardening, administration, hairdressing, complementary therapies, and many more.
- For example, do you publish your annual accounts online? Are you compliant with the Charities Regulator's Charities Governance Code? Do you use the Charities Regulator’s Fundraising Principles?St Francis Hospice Dublin is a registered charity (No. 20027193). We publish our annual report and audited financial statements on our web site. We act in compliance with the Charities Regulator’s Charities Governance Code. Our Fundraising Team abides by the Irish Charities Tax Research code of practice. Their Statement of Guiding Principles can be found on our web site: https://www.sfh.ie/statement-guiding-principles-fundraising.