News from ACCORD

ACCORD Hospice continues to put life into days

For the past 25 years the community of Renfrewshire as a whole has supported our organisation financially and physically to continue to put life into the days of all the patients and families we care for.

Brian Hunter (Clinical Services Manager at ACCORD) wanted to clarify that the restrictions associated with Covid 19 has not prevented ACCORD achieving this goal. ‘During these strange and difficult times, and whatever the future brings, ACCORD Hospice and the services we provide will be here whenever you or your loved ones need us. This virus has forced us to deliver our services very differently – Personal Protective Equipment; social distancing and footfall restrictions – however through the guidance of the Scottish Government and Health Protection Scotland we have continued with our ongoing services.

Since the lockdown our Inpatient Unit has merged with St Vincent’s unit to sustain the availability of Specialist Palliative Care beds within Renfrewshire as a whole. This merger has now come to an end as St Vincent’s returned last week to open up their unit – Thank you.

Nevertheless our Inpatient Unit continues to function at full capacity, with the staff striving to meet the challenges of ongoing PPE requirements, social distancing, upmost safety and supporting family interactions. We have endeavoured to ensure the unit remains warm and friendly and I can assure you all of our staff are smiling under their masks! Recent restrictions have not stopped us engaging with patients and relatives, undertaking difficult and emotional conversations as well as being very diverse to meet every need. All our community orientated services have had to adapt to new ways of supporting their patients and families. Through varied technology platforms our teams have monitored symptoms, minimised isolation, provided bereavement support and tried hard to put a little laughter into everyone’s daily routine. With all this in mind I must say a big thank you to all my team as they definitely have gone above and beyond!

Zoom!

Covid 19 has had a major influence on all our streams of income generation. All of our shops have been temporarily closed, large fundraising events postponed or cancelled and overall donations have reduced as everyone struggles with the effects of this pandemic. However the reality is that our supporters have been innovative in trying to find various new ways to generate the funds required to meet our daily unfunded expenditure of £5,800 Through online quizzes, a virtual pet show and many more virtual challenges, these intrepid supporters (from lock-down to date) have raised a fantastic amount of funds – Thank you.

Many of you are out walking, running or cycling so why not contact our fundraising team on 0141 581 2000 and undertake your own personal challenge to help our cause? Many of you might be aware that the Scottish Government has pledged its support to bridge our funding gap, however when and how much still hangs in the balance, so your ongoing financial support (no matter how big or small) is definitely needed and will be gratefully received. We are working very hard to try and reopen our shops safely and hope to have our Store and our Paisley Centre shop open on 13 July. In the meantime we are looking at new ways for you to view, buy and donate goods to our store. Keep a close eye on our website and social media outlets for updates.

As an organisation we must thank the many companies and individuals who have helped us in acquiring elements of PPE, toiletries, foodstuffs, transport and many more over recent weeks. It has been truly humbling to have so many people get in touch over the lock-down period – THANK YOU TO EVERYONE!

Although these are difficult times for ACCORD, we have recognised the plight of the services and our colleagues in the community and Nursing Homes. As an organisation we have looked at many ways to provide support – 24 hour telephone advice; Medication courier service and the creation of a Bereavement support service in collaboration with St Vincent’s. We will continue to offer such support going forward.    

Post-COVID is unknown at this time but we are under no illusion that it will continue to be very challenging with many changes required going forward. What is certain is that we will need your understanding and continued support to come through the other side stronger than we were on that first day of Lock-down.