26 September 2023

Clare Holland House to go North

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The operation of Clare Holland House is to transition to Canberra Health Services from 3 July next week by mutual agreement with Calvary Health Care.

Clare Holland House provides palliative care for people near the end of their life.

Palliative Care focuses on supporting patients who have one or more chronic conditions, with intervention aimed at assisting those people to live complete and comfortable lives through symptom management and suitable treatment of their condition(s) as they progress to the need for end of life care.

The decision follows discussions between the ACT Government and Calvary Health Care, focused on what is in the best interests of patients and staff.

Minister for Health, Rachel Stephen-Smith said the Government and Calvary had worked together to understand the complexities of Clare Holland House and its existing connections with Calvary Public Hospital Bruce.

“We recognise this has been a difficult decision for Calvary, and that it has been made to preserve the nation-leading integrated care model for both inpatients and outpatients,” Ms Stephen-Smith said.

“This is a model of care that has been highly valued by patients, families and staff since home-based services were moved to Clare Holland House,” she said.

She said the decision would ensure continuity of care for patients needing public palliative care services and provide certainty for Clare Holland House staff.

“We have heard very clearly from staff that they believe palliative care services – hospice and community-based – should stay together as a specialised, integrated palliative care service.’’

Ms Stephen-Smith said the ACT Government and Calvary were committed to work together over the next week and beyond to ensure the ongoing delivery of quality, professional care to patients, carers and loved ones during this time.

She said Canberra Health Services is to work with Calvary to ensure a smooth and safe transition of services with the aim of minimising disruption for staff, patients and carers as much as possible.

Clare Holland House staff are to be invited to transition their employment to Canberra Health Services, with members of the transition team onsite at Clare Holland House this week to support individual employees through the process.

“I know this has been a difficult and anxious time for team members at Clare Holland House,” Ms Stephen-Smith said, “as well as their patients and the community.”

“Our commitment to Clare Holland House team members is that they will be able to continue doing the same job, in the same team, with the same manager on the same pay and conditions,” she said.

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