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27 Mar 2020 Care

Coronavirus Update: Changes to normal services from Monday 16th March

With the recent announcement by the Government that it is moving to the delay phase of its plan to tackle coronavirus, we have taken a number of pragmatic decisions in the interests of protecting our most vulnerable service users on our In-Patient Unit and across the main hospice site.

As the people we support at Kirkwood have a wide range of life limiting illnesses – including patients who are particularly vulnerable – it is important that we take sensible precautions to protect their wellbeing, along with ensuring the safety of visitors, volunteers and employees.

While no cases of coronavirus have been identified at Kirkwood Hospice, we have a taken a number of measures in order to minimise the risk for those in our care.

At Kirkwood’s main hospice building in Dalton (and in particular on the In-Patient Unit), our main aim is to reduce footfall. As a result, we have asked non-clinical members of our team who do not need to work from the main Hospice building to work remotely where possible.

We have also taken a number of other important decisions about our services.

With effect from Monday 16th March, the following changes to our normal services will take place:

  • All Support & Therapy services held in the Support & Therapy Centre at Kirkwood Hospice will be suspended from Monday 16th March. This includes Drop-In Days, pre-arranged courses, group meetings and all Complementary Therapies
  • Family Care Team Bereavement and Counselling: one-to-one counselling sessions due to take place at Kirkwood Hospice have been cancelled. The fortnightly Bereavement Drop-In sessions normally held in the Support & Therapy Centre have also been cancelled. The Family Care Team will look to provide alternative arrangements for service users during this time and will contact anyone with a pre-existing appointment
  • All Learning & Development courses (including inductions) and Fundraising events planned to take place at the Hospice in the next 30 days will be cancelled or postponed until a future date

The In-Patient Unit will remain open as normal. We ask anyone who is feeling unwell with symptoms suggestive of coronavirus infection, particularly high temperature or a new continuous cough, NOT TO VISIT THE HOSPICE and to review the advice and guidance on the links to the GOV.UK and NHS UK websites below, or contact 111 if unsure.

The Community Palliative Care Team will work will be available as normal and will continue to see patients in the community as and when appropriate. If you have any queries, please contact the team on: 01484 557910

We understand that these measures may cause significant inconvenience for a range of people, particularly those who currently use services affected by these decisions. Throughout this process, Kirkwood’s main priority is the safety of our patients and other people potentially susceptible to coronavirus.

Please be assured that we will work hard throughout this period to ensure that patients still have access to necessary medical and clinical support when it is needed.

If you are a current patient, carer or family member and have concerns about your personal situation, please contact Kirkwood’s 24/7 Clinical Advice line on: 01484 557910


Useful links:

Latest Information and Advice from GOV.UK: Coronavirus (COVID-19)


Overview from NHS UK: Coronavirus (COVID-19)


Need clinical advice?
Call our advice line on:

01484 557910

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