Organisation:Galway HospiceCategory:Large OrganisationsCharity Reg no. :CHY88371. 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? Galway Hospice was set up in 1986 by local doctors and nurses with a mission of improving care for the dying in Galway. The service started in 1990 when we cared for 74 patients at home, our purpose-built hospice opened in 1997. The people of Galway have donated over €42m to the Hospice which has enabled the service to expand significantly and we cared for almost 1,000 people last year. The service includes Inpatient, Community, Daycare and a range of Therapies. We now provide support and care to people in Galway living with a range of life-limiting illnesses. We strive to help these patients and families live each of life’s moments to the fullest, with the ones who matter most. We are about hope, caring and going the extra mile to make life the best it can be for those who need us.
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? We support people to live as well as they can with a life-limiting illness.There is no one size fits all,each person can access the supports that are right for them.We have continued to care throughout the pandemic,our team made 6,366visits & 27,283calls to patients in the community & we cared for 300 inpatients.Our Medical Social Work team developed new ways to support,including virtual Remembrance Services & a socially distanced Walk & Talk group,where bereaved individuals can meet others & our our Team in a local woodland.Art Therapy developed a project which saw patients, families and staff painting rocks to keep everyone connected and creative during lockdown.Our Community Team put together info packs for nursing homes/GP’s to provide guidance on medications for end of life care.
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.“It’s been over a year since I was transferred from hospital to Galway Hospice. I couldn’t walk the short distance from the bed to the toilet using a rollator. I was told in the hospital that I had "days to live and to put my affairs in order. I had misgivings about going to the Hospice but I needn’t have been concerned, it wasn’t the end of the line. I now count myself as lucky to have been referred to Galway Hospice. The first thing that impressed me was the atmosphere of kindness that permeates everything. It’s genuine, not superficial. The thing that registered with me most was the expertise of the staff, after several days and many short walks I was able to walk to the toilet alone, just using the rollator – thanks to the wonderful Physiotherapists. My image of a Hospice was of a place where you and your family received support through the process of dying. My experience was different. From the start the care was holistic, in my case they focused on recovery. On my return home I was linked in with day care and home care services. These services provide an important link to the Hospice and they are a valuable source of support. It was good to know that the staff who knew my history were still involved in my recovery... Pain management is something that the staff have down to a fine art. Every problem was investigated. Thanks to the skill and kindness of the staff and the many people who were praying for me – I have gone way past the original prognosis” - Nóirín Mulligan.
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. We provide quality patient-centred care at a physical, psychological, social and spiritual level for our patients and those close to them. Last year 91% of our community patients died at home and 67% were never re-admitted to hospital once they were admitted to our service. In the past 10 years we have cared for increasing numbers of people dying in Galway. In 2020 we cared for 85% of the people who died from cancer and 21% of those who died from a non-cancer diagnosis. We are the only hospice in Ireland to achieve CHKS accreditation across all service areas. In our last survey we achieved 99% compliance in over 1,500 standards. The accreditation team commented that “The team have observed over the three days here that there is a special empathy and calmness across the facility, which is phenomenal, mindful of the many stresses faced by the nature of the hospice services provided”. We have also achieved ISO 9001 certification and have won two quality improvement awards with CHKS. We seek engagement and feedback at every opportunity which includes but is not limited to holding family meetings, comment cards, evaluation forms our online ‘Have Your Say’ feedback section, and our annual Patient Survey. In 2020, 95% of those surveyed rated access to our services as excellent or very good, while 95% rated the quality of the care provided as excellent or very good. 96% rated our hospice staff as excellent or very good.
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?‘Every Moment Matters’ is at the heart of everything we do. We understand that providing specialist palliative care means offering the right care with dignity and compassion to patients and families living with life-limiting illness in their place of choice. Covid has impacted day-to-day life but for patients under the care of our ‘home away from home’ Inpatient Unit, staff continue to ensure their experience is as comfortable as possible. For example we have been facilitating family visits, checking that the radio is tuned to a station they like, putting drawings and pictures from family on walls, arranging virtual and activity packs for Day Care patients. Galway Hospice has always valued the fact that it is the small moments that can mean the most, this has been especially true in 2020.
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.Galway Hospice would not be able to provide its care without the support of the public, who raise over €2million each year.From coffee mornings to tractor runs, people support us in many different ways, often inspired by their experience of our care.Donors have responded to Covid-19 with new ways to fundraise, like walking 100 miles in a month in memory of her daughter, or the family-run furniture store who made and sold their own face masks. Galway Hospice is supported by over 140 volunteers including receptionists, drivers, and dinner servers.Our volunteers are part of the Hospice family, some for more than 30 years.We always welcome new volunteers of all ages and from all walks of life. Anyone interested in supporting Galway Hospice can get in touch at www.galwayhospice.ie/091-770868
- 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?We are fully committed to providing the highest standard of care and being transparent.We are governed by a voluntary Board of Directors who do not receive payment and are responsible for the strategic direction of the organisation,ensuring due diligence and legal compliance. We are in compliance with the requirements of the Charities Regulator Governance Code. Our audited financial statements are available at www.galwayhospice.ie.We publish our annual quality report and CHKS accreditation reports online. Our Donor Charter aims to ensure that donors and prospective donors can have full confidence in all aspects of the way we are managed. We are committed to complying with the Guidelines for Charitable Organisations on fundraising from the General Public issued by the Charities Regulator