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St Clare Hospice appeals to business to bridge coronavirus supply shortages

St Clare Hospice is making an urgent appeal for donations of vital cleaning supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) for staff.

The Hastingwood charity, which cares for patients in East Herts and West Essex, is calling on businesses to give “gifts in kind” to support care for those at the end of their lives during the coronavirus crisis.

Director of patient care Carolanne Brannan explained: “The safety of our patients and staff teams is of utmost importance here at St Clare Hospice. The pandemic we’re currently facing as a nation is causing shortages in vital supplies that we are usually able to source without any issue.

St Clare Hospice in-patient unit manager Lynne Hooper (32439660)
St Clare Hospice in-patient unit manager Lynne Hooper (32439660)

“However, at this increasingly unpredictable time, we’re calling on local suppliers, businesses and the public to pull together as a community and ensure that we can continue caring for those who need us – with safety and preventing contamination as an immediate priority.

“NHS services and hospitals up and down the country will be working around the clock to tackle this virus and provide vital care to victims – and we are working hard to support them in any way we can. Alongside this national effort, the critical need for our hospice services remains as prevalent as ever – and in West Essex and East Herts, there are still local people who need us. So it’s absolutely vital that we’re able to stay open, keep caring, and ensure that we do so safely with the right essential equipment and supplies.”

Carolanne adds, “Any donations of these vital supplies you can give to St Clare Hospice, no matter how big or small, will contribute towards ensuring that we can continue doing our job as your local hospice. Thank you so much.”

The hospice, which was recently rated outstanding by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), needs:

Hand sanitiser gel – 30 small bottles are used per week by the Inpatient Unit staff and Hospice at Home teams visiting patients in their own homes, providing extra prevention against contamination.

Hand wash (liquid) – 30 bottles for regular handwashing – which is the best defence against contamination.

Washing up liquid – 10 bottles in stock on the hospice site can be used as a back-up for shortages of hand wash.

Sanitising wipes – 30 packets per week to continuously disinfect high-touch areas such as door handles, handrails and light switches. Their disposability makes sanitising wipes a great option for preventing contamination.

Face masks – as many as possible are needed to help prevent the virus from spreading between people. Around 250 can be used by clinical teams in just one week.

Fabric anti-bacterial spray – as many bottles as possible could help doctors, nurses and clinical staff clean their clothes when visiting multiple people in their own homes, preventing contamination between households.

Medical scrubs and clothing for Hospice at Home staff, including leggings and t-shirts – 120 sets of scrubs and other, basic clothing are needed for our Hospice at Home teams, who visit multiple patients at home per day. Our teams constantly need clean clothing to prevent contamination between households.

Tablets/iPads – 6 iPads so in-patients can connect with friends and family while in isolation. This will help to provide vital emotional and social support at one of the most difficult times in life.

Laptops – 10 laptops would provide additional provision for both clinical and support staff to be able to work from home.

Donors should contact community fundraising manager Dani De’ath by emailing dani@stclarehospice.org.uk or calling 01279 773738 or 07718257704.

The charity, which provides its services free of charge, fears a £100,000 deficit in income because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Each year it needs over £4.8m a year to run. To help, see


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