Hospices have played an important part in the Covid-19 response, supplementing NHS capacity as well as ensuring their valuable work caring for those towards the end of their lives continues.
The Department regularly assesses the effect of the Covid-19 outbreak on the hospice sector, and through NHS England and Improvement (NHSE/I) is in discussions with stakeholders in the sector about the challenges they face. A range of steps have been taken to support hospices.
On 8 April 2020, the Chancellor announced funding of up to £200 million for hospices over three months as part of the wider £750 million funding package for the voluntary and charitable sector.
Alongside this, hospices benefited from the financial support offered by the Treasury to all charities, such as paying no business rates for their shops next year and applying for a Business Interruption Loan. Charities, alongside other sectors, can also access the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, and charity shops (which are already eligible for 80% charitable rate relief) will benefit from the new enhanced retail rate relief at 100%.
We continue to keep the impact of Covid-19 on hospices under review.