DCSIMG

Hospice dips into reserves after it posts shortfall of £1m

Sir Miles Walker

Sir Miles Walker

Hospice Isle of Man has announced that following the 2013 Year End, it will need to dip into its financial reserves for 2014.

The charity was set up in 1983 but it says that it is facing tough times in the current economic climate.

Sir Miles Walker CBE, chairman of Hospice Care said: ‘Twenty-thirteen was another busy year for Hospice.

‘There has been an increase of 59 per cent in referrals to Hospice since the move to new premises in 2007 and admissions to IPU have increased by 38 per cent.

‘Hospice continues to offer all palliative care services while at the same time tightly controlling expenditure.

‘One of the key funding sources for Hospice is legacies and over the last five years we have received 33 per cent of our annual funding (excluding exceptional items) from legacies.

‘However in 2013 we saw the lowest level of legacies for four years. As a result of this, there was a £1m budget shortfall in 2013 which will be shown in our annual accounts when presented at the annual general meeting in June.

Sir Miles, who was the island’s first chief minister, added: ‘Hospice holds reserves which are for that rainy day and therefore we have decided to use some of our reserves to cover this deficit rather than look at reducing services.

‘Hospice continues to employ 98 permanent staff the majority of which are highly trained nursing and medical staff that are crucial to our services.

‘We are also very fortunate to have over 500 volunteers who do a wide variety of jobs for the charity and we have calculated that our volunteer workforce saves the charity just over £1 million per year.

‘The fundraising team, our regional committees, our shops and lots of supporters on the island work hard to generate income to continue these services.

‘They have worked tirelessly and are always trying to find ways of working better and smarter in order to lower expenditure.

‘As a charity we have had to be more creative, flexible and adaptable in terms of what we do and what we provide, supporting patients and their families either in the adult wing or at Rebecca House, the children’s hospice.’

He added that 83p of every £1 donated to Hospice was spent on patient care.

The Department of Health supports its services with a £600,000 cash grant made up to about another £100,000 with additional support. This represents 19 per cent of the £3.6m Hospice needs to raise each year.

‘Hospice has always had a policy of being open and transparent with the island’s community therefore we felt it was appropriate to inform the Manx public of our need to use our reserves.’ said Sir Miles.

‘While the board feels it is appropriate to use these reserves I would hasten to add we could not continue to use these funds year in, year out without a serious impact to our services.

‘We are grateful to the Manx public for their help and support, without which we would be unable to continue to provide, free of charge, the care that we do for our island community and we would ask for their continued support through these difficult times.’

Margaret Simpson, chief executive of Hospice added: ‘All staff and volunteers work very hard to be innovative in developing new areas of care to ensure the patients are provided with the highest professional care possible.

‘We are grateful to the Manx public for their help and support, without which we would be unable to continue to provide, free of charge, the care that we do for our island community and we would ask for their continued support through these difficult times.’

Click here to visit the Hospice’s website.

Readers can contact the fundraising team on 647431.

 

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