1. ITV Report

50 workers ‘at risk of redundancy’ as Somerset hospice faces financial problems

St Margaret's Hospice Care. Credit: ITV News West Country

Up to fifty members of staff at a Somerset hospice are at risk of being made redundant as the charity battles “an increasingly unsustainable financial position”.

St Margaret’s Hospice has announced it plans to remodel its services, closing an in-patient unit in Yeovil while increasing the number of in-patient beds at its Bishop’s Hill site.

The charity, which works across the county, said up to fifty members of staff have been placed at risk of redundancy as a result of the proposed structural changes.

Up to fifty members of staff are at risk of being made redundant. Credit: ITV News West Country

Chief executive Ann Lee described the news as “unsettling” but said changes were necessary in response to “an increasingly unsustainable financial position”.

We believe the changes we are proposing today are necessary to ensure we can continue to deliver outstanding care to people facing life-limiting illnesses across Somerset while living within our means.

Bringing all our in-patient beds under one roof in Taunton will help to overcome ongoing recruitment challenges, which have made it increasingly difficult for us to ensure adequate medical staffing cover at our Yeovil In-patient Unit.

The amount of money we spend on clinical services is increasing, and so is the demand for our care. NHS funding currently covers 31 per cent of the costs of delivering our care, resulting in us relying heavily on the generosity and support of our local community. In common with many hospices across the UK, our fundraising and retail teams are experiencing a very challenging economic climate. We have been working hard to grow our income and control costs, but we also need to review our clinical services to ensure St Margaret’s Hospice Care has a sustainable future.

– Ann Lee, CEO

A public information session will be held at St Margaret’s Hospice in Little Tarrat Lane, Yeovil, from 2pm to 4pm on Wednesday, August 14.