Better funding for children's palliative care

Together for Short Lives, together with Hospice UK, has asked charities providing hospice and palliative care in England to tell us how much statutory money they received in 2015/16. In doing so, we have found that children’s palliative care charities are on the brink of state funding crisis. Our main findings, which you can read in detail in our report, are:

  • Cuts and freezes in statutory funding for children’s hospice and palliative care charities means a bleak outlook for seriously ill children and families in England. This is despite the cost of delivering this care increasing by 10% due to additional demand.
  • On average, the overall amount of statutory funding for charities providing children’s palliative care continues on a downward trajectory, falling year on year (22% in 2015/16 compared to 23% in 2014/15 and 27% in 2013/14).
  • Local authority funding for children’s palliative care charities has fallen dramatically, down by 61% over the last year – only contributing 1% of the money needed.

Costs of Palliative Care are increasing and the State's contribution is decreasingStatutory funding for children's palliative care is a postcode lottery










In publishing this report, both Together for Short Lives and Hospice UK are urging the government and NHS England to:

  1. Listen to children and their families and end this crisis in children’s palliative care funding
  2. Follow the example of the Scottish Government, which has committed £30 million funding to Children’s Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS) over the next five years
  3. Re-examine funding arrangements as a matter of urgency; there needs to be more investment and fairer funding from the government for hospice care now - to supplement the vital support provided by local communities and prevent hospices reaching crisis point
  4. Increase the value of the Children’s Hospice Grant
  5. Carry out a national inquiry into the state of children’s palliative care funding in England.

We have carried out the same survey with these charities for eight years so we can understand funding trends and their impact on services for children with life-limiting or life-threatening conditions. We asked those charities which provide health or social care to children and young people.

Statutory funding for children's palliative care is a postcode lotteryStatutory funding for children's palliative care is a postcode lottery

How you can help

There are some very simple steps which you can take to press your local commissioners to improve the way they plan and fund children’s palliative care.

  • Please share this story with your networks on Facebook, Twitter and beyond, using #fundnotfail 

Statutory funding for children's palliative care is a postcode lottery