Jersey Hospice Care Position Statement - Children and Young People Services

Friday 01 Jul 2022

Palliative Care Services for Children and Young People

In 2016, in consultation with our Council of Trustees, we made the decision to extend our services to offer specialist palliative care services to children, young people and their families. The expansion of our services to children and young people means that since 2016 we have been able to care for anyone in Jersey with a life shortening condition, irrespective of diagnosis or age. 

We now provide a range of services and support to children, young people, and their families, from diagnosis, symptom management, treatment, and emotional and practical support, to help at end of life and daytime respite sessions in the home or at Hospice. 

We are committed to further extending these services. Our aim is to provide our care wherever needed; in the hospital, during clinic visits, or at home, with care tailored to meet the changing medical needs of children and young people as they grow, working with other care providers towards ensuring each child receives the best possible care, always. 

In December 2020, our Council of Trustees made a commitment to creating a specialist unit for children and young people that would provide overnight residential care (for both end of life and respite) and serve as a hub for day services where families can be supported by the team at Hospice and other agencies working alongside us. Work has been undertaken that has looked at options to build on the current Hospice grounds and what such a building might comprise and offer.

More recently, we have been considering how a specialist unit for children and young people aligns with the States Assembly approved and Government of Jersey (GoJ) led future Jersey Care Model (JCM), which aims to provide the best quality health services for all islanders. We are fully engaged with and participating in the JCM and working with colleagues at GoJ Children, Young People, Education and Skills (CYPES), Family Nursing and Home Care (FNHC) and others. We want to make sure that children and young people receive the best holistic and seamless care, without gaps in care or duplication of services between health care providers. 

The creation of a new specialist In Patient Unit for children and young people at Hospice will require significant investment and resources and it is crucially important that we get this right and build something that is appropriate and sustainable. Under the JCM we want to maximise the potential for collaboration with other Jersey providers of children’s services to provide islanders with the best children and young people service. We are also looking closely at whether there may be existing premises on island that could be used to provide a specialist unit for children and young people. This could be a potential short-term option that could be utilised to prove the case for a new build in the medium to longer term. 

We are currently working to fully understand the number of children and young people with a life-limiting condition or other complex health needs, what specialist care they need and what support their wider families need.

At present, funding permitting, we are looking to expand our current team to ensure that the needs of children and young people can be met as far as possible through daytime support in their homes, in the community and in the Hospice Day Centre.

July 2022