Kilnwick woman in hospice hot seat

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The chairperson of Saint Catherine’s Hospice’s Board of Trustees is stepping down after four and a half successful years in the role and has welcomed his successor.

Ian Westmoreland says he has enjoyed his time as chairman. “The greatest pleasure has been working with the staff and volunteers and being part of a culture where absolutely everything, from the chief executive and trustees down, is focussed on providing care for the patients and their families,” he said.

“I am particularly proud of the wonderful volunteers, without their help it would be impossible to achieve what the hospice does.”

In his period as chairman, the hospice has opened extra beds as part of building improvement work, begun a programme of working on end of life care in local care homes, integrated the Macmillan nurses team in Saint Catherine’s, worked towards providing a hospice at home service and worked more closely with Marie Curie. The way health care is funded has also changed, with the shift from health trusts to the new clinical commissioning groups.

He will be replaced by former deputy chairwoman Diane Flint and Mr Westmoreland wished his successor well in the role.

“Diane has been an excellent trustee and I have every confidence that she will be an excellent leader too. I am delighted that she has taken on the role,” he added.

Mrs Flint, who is a freelance HR consultant from Kilnwick, near Driffield, became a member of the hospice trust in 2008, when she joined its fundraising committee. She became a board member two and a half years ago and deputy chair last year. She paid tribute to her predecessor.

“Ian will be a hard act to follow, particularly in terms of the time and dedication he has given to the hospice.

“We have been very fortunate as he has been tireless in his commitment to Saint Catherine’s – I can only hope that I can live up to that.”

She says she is looking forward to helping spread the word about the work the hospice does across the huge geographic area it covers.

“The hospice covers 1,600 square miles, taking in Whitby, Malton, Scarborough, Bridlington, Driffield and everywhere in between,” she said.

“I look forward to continuing to spread the message about our excellent work, helping around 2,000 people each year. We have an excellent hospice, with an extremely strong team of staff, volunteers, shops and support groups.

“There are challenges ahead. The country has an ageing population and it is up to us to ensure that population is cared for in the way that they want to be cared for.

“As we look ahead, the hospice is moving forward, developing new partnerships and services and in particular, taking its palliative care closer to people in their own homes. All in all, a very exciting period for Saint Catherine’s.”

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