A Somerset MP has vowed to support Weston Hospicecare and other hospices in his constituency after meeting the charity’s chief executive Paul Winspear.
Wells MP James Heappey – whose constituency covers part of Weston Hospicecare’s patch – met Mr Winspear to discuss funding for hospices and MPs’ lobbying for central government to consider the recent NHS funding increase’s impact on palliative care bodies.
On social media, Mr Heappey said: “I know how valuable Weston Hospicecare is to people in my constituency and I will support them going forward.
“Hospices are an essential part of the way we look after terminally ill people in their last days. They do incredible work and always have done.”
When asked by a Facebook user about how he intends to support the hospice, Mr Heappey replied: “However they want me to; like meeting with them when asked, attending the fundraisers of their local supporters branches, and raising with the Government issues that are affecting them and on which they’d like me to help.”
Mr Winspear said the meeting with Mr Heappey had been a good opportunity to discuss the future of hospice care in the area.
He said: “It was a great pleasure to meet James Heappey MP and to discuss aspects of funding for hospices.
“Weston Hospicecare greatly appreciates the passion and support of our local MPs in lobbying central government to include hospices in the recent 6.5% NHS pay award deal, and to continue the debate about how hospice care can be funded more fairly and equitably nationwide”.
Weston Hospicecare receives just 20% of its £4.2million annual running costs from the NHS and must seek other avenues such as retail, fundraising and public donations to help it provide free medical care to those with life-limiting illnesses.