Some of the most frequently asked questions are below

Who we are?

We are The FRIENDS of St. Brigid’s Hospice and Home Care Services, a company limited by Guarantee.

Why are you called the FRIENDS?

We, the Friends are a registered charity, CHY 10804, and our sole purpose is to raise funds which go towards the provision of top class Hospice care for the people of Kildare and West Wicklow. Therefore, if you want your donation to go towards improvements to St. Brigid’s Hospice it is essential to make your donations to “The Friends of St. Brigid’s Hospice and Home Care Services”.

Who are the Friends?

The Friends are people from all over Kildare and West Wicklow who are supporters of St. Brigid’s Hospice and Home Care services. The area served by the Hospice is divided into ten districts, and each of these is represented by people who serves either as Directors, Members or belong to Support Groups.

The Board of Directors meets once a month and makes decisions regarding fundraising and expenditure of funds raised. Our AGM takes place in the Autumn, and is attended by Directors, Members, the staff of St. Brigid’s Hospice and Home Care Services, invited guests and interested members of the public. Our extensively audited accounts are approved at the AGM.

All the work carried out by the Chairperson and the Board of Directors is done in a voluntary capacity so the all donations received go directly towards improving hospice care.

How are Donations spent?

A major project has recently been completed and this is the extension and total refurbishment of St. Brigid’s Hospice premises in a beautiful rural setting on The Curragh, This was an enormous and costly project which was a joint venture with the HSE. The HSE set out the criteria required for such a building, but almost all of the funding was raised by The Friends. We are confident that St. Brigid’s Hospice is now a beautiful environment for patients and their families.

How much did this Project cost?

The final cost was in the region of 6 million euro.

Do the FRIENDS finance St. Brigid’s Hospice in other ways?

Yes, in accordance with our Memorandum and Articles of Association, The Friends also provide funding in the following ways:

  • Nurses of the Hospice and Homecare Team regularly apply to do do approved courses which enable them to upskill in the care of their patients, and we cover the cost.
  • We cover the cost of Agency nurses when this is required.
  • We recently paid €76,000 for a Transporter, which was fitted out according to HSE specifications, and this is regularly used, for example to bring patients to and from hospital appointments, and has proved invaluable. It is staffed by volunteer drivers.
  • We provided funding for specialist equipment and other patient comforts
  • We support the payment for the services provided by a physiotherapist.
  • We support the payment for complementary therapy, for example aromatherapy.
  • We support the payment for the services of a bereavement counsellor who assists grieving families, and who organises an annual non-denominational Bereavement Service for families and friends who have lost loved ones, and this gives them great support and consolation at a difficult time.

How can I donate?

On line via my charity.ie

Cheque/bank draft made payable to “The Friends of St. Brigid’s Hospice”.

Bequest/Legacy- maybe you would like to remember us in your will.

Donations in lieu of flowers, birthdays, anniversaries, in memory of a loved one, all can be made via My Charity.ie.

What is Palliative Care?

Palliative care is the continuing active total care of patients and their families, at a time when the medical expectation is no longer cure. Palliative care responds to physical, psychological, social and spiritual needs, and extends to support in bereavement. Palliative care is focused on reducing and relieving the symptoms of progressive illness.

How can my family or I access Palliative care?

Your G.P. or hospital doctor can refer you or your family member to the service. Patients are referred for symptom management, respite care, and end of life care. Referral for admission to the inpatient unit can also be through the community based Specialist Palliative Homecare Team.
Care is provided regardless of religion, culture, or social situations.

The team is consultant led and includes :

  • Doctors
  • Nurses
  • Support services
  • Physiotherapy
  • Complementary therapy
  • Administrative staff

Can family or friends visit?

Visitors are regarded as an important part of the day and are very welcome. Visiting hours are flexible. One or two family members may stay overnight.

Do I have to pay for Hospice or Home care?

No, these services are free. They are funded and administrated by the H.S.E. in conjunction with financial assistance from “The Friends of St. Brigid’s”.

Is it difficult to care for a patient at home?

The Hospice team will prepare an individualized care plan that will assess the amount of care needed by the patient. The homecare team visit regularly, and are always accessible to answer queries and provide support. The G.P. continues to have responsibility in relation to prescribing medication for pain and symptom control. The support provided by the home care team is intended to complement the care provided by the G.P. and Public Health Nurse.

St Brigid’s Hospice is fortunate to have such a committed team of professional staff of doctors, nurses and care staff who in the words of Dame Cicely Saunders “Help you to live with dignity until you die”.