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St John’s Hospice, Lancaster rated Outstanding by Care Quality Commission

17 November 2016
St John's Hospice
  • Media,
  • Hospices

The CQC has found the quality of care provided by St John’s Hospice in Lancaster to be outstanding following an inspection in July this year.

St John's Hospice provides palliative and end of life care for adults with life limiting illnesses. The staff team support people and their families by providing medical, nursing, personal, emotional and spiritual care. They also offer a hospice at home service in the local community to assist people living at home with a variety of day and support services. At the time of this inspection, there were four people inpatient at St John's Hospice.

The service was rated Outstanding for being caring, responsive and well-led and Good for being safe and effective; making them Outstanding overall.

Debbie Westhead, Deputy Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care in the North, said:

 “We found the care provided at St John’s Hospice, Lancaster to be outstanding.

“We saw a service where the care is exceptional, responsive to people’s needs, and really puts people using it at the heart of everything they do.

“Without exception, people and their relatives spoke extremely highly of staff and their experiences of care at St John’s Hospice. We saw that end of life care plans were very detailed and were not only making a difference to the people using the service, but also their relatives.

“It was impressive to see how well-led St John’s Hospice was. The registered manager and management team also worked jointly with other organisations, to make sure that people using their service were receiving the best possible care. This included research studies with local and national organisations influenced and improved best practice and national policy-making. We saw that that this had a major impact on people’s care.

“The whole team should be very proud of the service they are providing.”

A full report of the inspection has been published.

The report highlights a number of areas of outstanding practice.

CQC spoke with people who used the service, relatives, staff and other professionals during this inspection. They told inspectors the service provided an exemplary level of care and the leadership was exceptional. They spoke extremely highly of staff. One person using the service said: "From being in despair I am now able to focus on what matters, all with the help from the staff." A relative of someone using the service said, "The support from the hospice staff exceeded anything we had hoped for. It was fantastic."

The management team set up numerous forums and support groups to seek people's views, provide support and information and ensure people received person centred flexible care that fully met their needs.

People and their families told inspectors that staff championed people's right to choose how, where and when they wanted their care provided. They said staff were proactive and 'made things happen' in order to provide exceptional care for people. CQC saw staff had supported people to attend special family events and helped patients with arrangements to marry in the hospice.

People said staff were extremely caring and respectful, listened to them and assisted them promptly. Inspectors saw end of life care plans were informative and personalised, and staff were remarkable in their determination to help people to carry out their final wishes.

This included providing advice, support and staff at a person's home so they could remain in the comfort of their home with loved ones. They commended staff for the practical, emotional and spiritual support provided and outstanding care that enabled their relative to have a dignified, peaceful and pain free death.


For further information please contact CQC Regional Communications Officer Kerri James by email or by phone on 07464 92 9966.

Journalists wishing to speak to the press office outside of office hours can find out how to contact the team here. Please note: the press office is unable to advise members of the public on health or social care matters. For general enquiries, please call 03000 61 61 61.

Last updated:
29 May 2017

Notes to editors

Providers are required by law to display their ratings on their premises and on their websites so that the public can see their rating quickly and easily. This should be done within 21 days of publication of their inspection report.

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England.

We make sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.

We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety and we publish what we find to help people choose care.