This month Jackie Tritton, Chief Clinical Officer at Rennie Grove Peace Hospice Care, answers some of the most frequently asked questions about what the merger integration means for patients, now and in the future.
What does the merger mean for patients?
“As a current patient, the services you already access will continue to operate without interruption. The aim of this merger is to enhance and expand services as we progress. We will be working hard to identify the needs of the patients across our entire catchment area and continuously developing and delivering services that meet those needs.”
I live in Buckinghamshire, what are the benefits of the merger for me?
“Wherever you live in our catchment area, the aim of this merger is the enhance and expand services as well as addressing any inequalities in the availability of services.
“The huge geographical spread of our patch means that not everybody will live near to one of the services we offer – such as day services or an inpatient unit. When that is the case, we will continue to work with partner organisations in the area to ensure that patients with life-limiting illnesses can access all the services they need, where they need them, to make every moment matter.”
Will patients from Buckinghamshire need to travel to Watford if they need inpatient services?
“It has always been the case that we work with local partner organisations to access the care patients need, in their area. If a patient in Buckinghamshire needs to access inpatient care, we would continue to work with other hospices to find them a bed in their local area. We do not intend for all Rennie Grove Peace patients to receive inpatient care at the Peace Hospice building in Watford.”
Will the existing children’s service be expanded into southwest Hertfordshire?
“We will work closely with partner organisations in the area to understand what the need is for children’s hospice care in this area. If we identify that there is a need in the area, this is something we will look to address.”
How are you bringing services together behind the scenes?
“We’re making changes to the way we work behind the scenes to ensure a smoother process for patients that helps you access the care you need, from diagnosis onwards.
“We have moved to one electronic patient record system for accessing and storing patient information which helps us in communication and managing a patient’s overall clinical needs.
“We are also working on developing a central coordination centre for patient referrals. This single point of contact will ensure that everybody from GPs and healthcare professionals to patients and families have one way to contact the organisation, and referrals will be dealt with swiftly by trained nurses. They will be able to identify a patient’s needs and recommend the best services to meet them.
“This will ensure that patients from diagnosis onwards can access the services that will make the biggest difference to their life.”
Where to next?
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