The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly has announced the provision of an additional €10.68m in recurring annual funding for the voluntary hospice sector from 2021 onwards.
The funding will help to address the core funding shortfall, which has contributed to the ongoing financial sustainability challenges of the sector, in seeking to respond to the rising demand for high quality, accessible, palliative and end of life care in the last two decades.
Speaking about the increase in funding, Minister Donnelly said: “Ireland is fortunate to have a dedicated voluntary hospice sector, who have worked tirelessly down through the years, in partnership with local communities, to expand the network of hospice services around the country.
“I would like to particularly commend the voluntary hospice sector for their efforts to maintain critical and ongoing care services against the background of the challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Minister Donnelly said the recurring nature of the €10.68m allocation reflects a long term commitment by Government to this service and his own views of the value and unique role that voluntary hospices play and will continue to play in Irish society.
He added “The additional funding is designed to take account of the potential impact of the loss of fundraising income during the public health emergency, but most importantly, ensures when such activity gets back on track it can be used to enhance and improve services, rather than fund core services.”
The funding will benefit the hospices which make up the Voluntary Hospice Group: which are:
- Our Lady’s Hospice and Care Services, Harold’s Cross, Blackrock and Wicklow
- St Francis Hospice, Raheny and Blanchardstown
- Marymount Hospice, Cork.
- Milford Care Centre, Limerick
- North West Hospice, Sligo
- Galway Hospice