Hundreds of families in the Peterborough area could benefit from children’s palliative care services and EACH wants to hear from them

January 23, 2020

East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) says it is “determined to address” how many families in Peterborough can access its vital care and support, as the charity begins consultation on how it might better meet the needs of the community.

EACH offers specialist nursing care, symptom management nursing, short breaks, wellbeing activities, therapies, counselling and volunteer services in the family home, all meeting the individual needs of a child and young person, and their entire family. Those can be delivered at one of its three hospices in Cambridgeshire, Norfolk or Suffolk, in family homes or closeby in familiar surroundings.

The nearest hospice to Peterborough is in Milton, just north of Cambridge, and currently EACH only provides support to 20 children, young people and family members in the Peterborough area. Estimates suggest there are between 300 and 380 children who could benefit from an aspect of EACH’s service, with that number expected to rise to almost 450 by 2026.

EACH will be holding a drop-in session for parents of children with highly complex and serious health conditions between 10.00am and 3.00pm on Friday 31 January at the Goldhay Centre. Staff hope to hear their opinions on health and social care services for children in the Peterborough area, and how EACH might help. The charity has also set up an online survey for those unable to make it.

Linda Maynard, Acting Director of Care, said: “We don’t have a dedicated focal point at present in the city and are determined to address this imbalance for families in the area. Any extended service will provide the opportunity to significantly increase our reach to all families living in Peterborough and surrounding areas, including those unaware or unsure of exactly what we provide.

“Although the Peterborough area has good home-based, social and community nursing services, and several volunteer agencies delivering wellbeing services, a key area missing is a specialist symptom management nursing service. We also believe there to be a gap in key universal health and wellbeing support services.

“To progress our vision to reach into the greater Peterborough area, we’ve met with local care providers and received an extremely positive response. This project is still in its very early stages, though. There will be much work to do, with different steps required to plan, evaluate and implement any new care developments. Key to this will be talking with families to better understand their perception of gaps in services and understand how existing and new services can join up for the benefit of everyone.”

EACH offers care and support to any and all families in Peterborough and the rest of the region who have children with a life-threatening condition or complex health care needs, as well as those bereaved of a child because of their condition or complex health.

There will be creative activities for children and light refreshments at the drop-in session. Parents unable to make it are able to share their views at Further information is available on 01223 815107.