East Berkshire's Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) have commissioned Thames Hospice to deliver an integrated care model for palliative and end-of-life patients and their loved ones.
Starting from April next year, the model will streamline the existing services available across Windsor, Maidenhead, Ascot, Bracknell and Slough. Anyone requiring community-based specialist palliative care will be able to access the expert medical and nursing team based at Thames Hospice. They will benefit from services such as day therapies, counselling, a rapid response service and a 24/7 advice line and inpatient services.
The community palliative care team is currently run by both Thames Hospice and Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.
Fiona Slevin-Brown, Director of Strategy and Operations for the CCGs, said: "This is an opportunity to improve services for our patients and their families and we are confident that moving this service to Thames Hospice will enable them to expand the capacity and reach of end-of-life services through enhanced integration of the teams.
"We would like to thank Berkshire Healthcare for their ongoing support to end-of-life care through services such as community nursing, and look forward to working with all our providers to ensure excellent end-of-life provision for patients."
Debbie Raven, Chief Executive at Thames Hospice, said: "We are thrilled that the CCGs of East Berkshire have commissioned us to lead the delivery of all specialist palliative care services to our local community.
"Today's announcement clearly demonstrates their continued commitment to investing in end-of-life and palliative care services in East Berkshire, and in us as the organisation to lead this more cohesive model.
"This integrated approach will further strengthen the high-quality end-of-life-care services we are able to provide alongside our partners in East Berkshire."
Jill Barker, Regional Director for Berkshire Healthcare said: "We have worked in partnership with Thames Hospice over the years to provide excellent end-of-life care, and our district nursing teams will continue to offer high-quality palliative care support to the people of East Berkshire."