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Palliative care gets funding boost

Palliative care within the NHS and children's hospices will receive a £30m funding injection this year, according to the government.

Community children's nurses will be the focus of the £15m allocated to palliative care in the NHS, while more outreach services will be possible with the other half of the money, which is going to children's hospices, said Health Secretary Andy Burnham.

Children's Hospices UK Chief Executive, Barbara Gelb, said: "This tremendous boost will enable children's hospice services in England to increase the invaluable support they give to children, young people and families in their own homes. It is also great news that the role of children's nurses, with whom children's hospices work closely, will be strengthened.

"However, even with this one-off cash injection, children's hospices, which are all registered charities, will still rely overwhelmingly on their local communities for funding."

Mr Burnham said: "For too long, services have been organised to fit the convenience of the system. A great NHS will put the convenience of the patient first, and move services towards them where it is safe to do so.

"But care in the home can also achieve better results and save money. For anyone, facing major treatment can be scary - but particularly when you're young."

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Children's Hospices UK