Boris Johnson unveils £25m hospice funding boost in bid to ease end-of-life care
Boris Johnson has promised £25m in a bid to relieve pressure on frontline hospice and palliative care services.
The Prime Minister said it was "vital" to ensure hospice staff had "the resources they need, when they need them".
The funding - which Number 10 said would come from existing NHS budgets - is aimed at easing pressure on hospices, which receive most of their cash from the voluntary sector.
Downing Street said the money would help to keep hospices open, "improve the quality of end of life care", and ensure that people "die as comfortably as possible" - as well as easing workforce pressures.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: "Seeing a loved one nearing the end of their life is one of the hardest things a family will ever experience, so it’s vital that we support our fantastic and hardworking hospice staff to deliver the highest quality palliative care.
"As Prime Minister I am making sure that today our hospices and palliative care services are given a £25 million boost to alleviate the everyday pressures faced on the frontline, helping to ensure they have the resources they need, when they need them."
The announcement was given a cautious welcome by Robert Peston, the ITV political editor who also chairs the national care charity Hospice UK.
He said: "Many hospices and palliative care providers are facing acute financial pressures and are struggling to meet the growing need for their desperately important services.
"This injection of new funds by the Government could not have come at a more critical time. It will help many, but it will not completely alleviate the serious funding problems facing a swelling number of charitable hospices."
According to the Government, hospices support more than 200,000 people with terminal or life-limiting conditions every year, as well as help "tens of thousands" of family members needing bereavement support.
The funding boost follows a move by NHS England in June to ramp up the grant allocated to children's hospices from £12m to £25m by 2023/24.