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Jigsaw reopens for 24/7 care

Jigsaw, the only children’s hospice in Cumbria, has reopened for service 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Our incredible staff offer support for babies, children and young people living with a life-limiting illness, as well as their families, from all corners of the county and beyond.

The reopening comes in part thanks to a successful recruitment drive which has brought more fantastic staff to work at the hospice and leadership being able to adapt processes to work safely alongside the continuing threat of Covid-19.

During the height of Covid-19 pandemic Jigsaw had been operating on a reduced basis within the building staff looked to help keep the children and their families who attend as safe as possible. This meant a reduction in regular respite visits, but end of life care was maintained. However, staff were able to increase the amount of support calls they offered to families as a way of assisting people remotely.

Even before the pandemic, the Jigsaw unit had not been able to open 24/7, primarily due to staffing challenges, so the recent reopening has come as a welcome boost for all the Jigsaw family.

Kate Allison, Team Lead at Jigsaw, said: “Covid has been terrible for the majority of families, but in particular it’s been a real challenge for families who have children with life-limiting illnesses. So, we’re really happy that we can get back to providing a regular pattern of support for children and their families which we know will make a huge difference.”

One of those new recruits is Shannon Simpson, from Penrith, who has joined Jigsaw after working at the Royal Preston Hospital and training as a children’s nurse at Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool.

“At Jigsaw you can really be involved in a patient’s care and give that one-to-one attention you might not be able to in other settings,” she said.

“I’m looking forward to being able to help meet all a child’s needs, not just their nursing needs, but being able to do activities with them and help make their stays with us as enjoyable and enriching as possible. We really want to make sure that each day is as special as it possibly can be.”