Mark Hunter gets pledge from Prime Minister for delegation on hospice funding

March 5, 2008 4:01 PM
St Ann's Hospice

Mark outside St Ann's Hospice in Heald Green

Today at Prime Minister's Questions Mark Hunter, Liberal Democrat MP for the Cheadle constituency, secured a promise from the Prime Minister that he would meet an all-party delegation to discuss the funding crisis currently facing hospices.

Mr Hunter began his question to the Prime Minister by bringing to his attention the fact that St Ann's Hospice, based in Heald Green in Mr Hunter's constituency has to raise a massive £16,000 each day to continue providing the services it does to the local community. He then went on to remind the Prime Minister that currently the Government only provides one third of the money that hospices need to run the services which are part of the Government's End of Life Care Strategy.

This question came as part of Mr Hunter's campaign to raise awareness of the funding shortfalls that many hospices all around the country are facing, which is supported not only by local hospice St Ann's but by the respected national charity Help the Hospices. He had recently raised the issue and taken part in a debate in the House of Commons, where he had challenged the Minister over cuts in real terms funding.

Mr Hunter, speaking after Prime Minister's Questions said, "I am delighted that the Prime Minister has agreed to my request to meet with an all party delegation to discuss what might be done to improve funding for hospices.

"Hospices play a key role in the NHS End of Life Care Strategy and provide crucial services for the local community. Without these charitable foundations the NHS would have to find millions to run their own hospices. I know well the excellent work that St Ann's does in my constituency and that they deserve more support from Government so that can spend less time fundraising and more time looking after their patients."

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