Saint Francis Hospice has set up a project to ensure the homeless are able to access end of life care.

Ann Dalgliesh, a senior nurse at the hospice in Havering-atte-Bower, is leading the 18-month project which will provide onsite support for staff at hostels and family members as well as reaching out to people who may be rough sleeping at a family or friend’s house.

The aim is to engage with them so they can access the healthcare services they need more easily.

It will cover Havering, Redbridge and Barking and Dagenham.

Ann said: "As well as suffering from poorer physical and mental health and being at risk of long-term health problems, health services are also difficult to access without a fixed address.

“Having worked as a nurse in the community for many years, I have come across many people living in this situation."

The first half of the project will focus on developing strong relationships with agencies working with homeless people in Havering to make it easier for them to be referred to the hospice.

The last nine months will concentrate on people in Barking and Dagenham and Redbridge.

An important part of Ann’s role involves education and she will be working with local hostels, healthcare organisations, as well as the family and friends of homeless people, so they have a better understanding of why end of life care is so important and how the hospice can make a difference to their lives.

Jan Scott, service development manager, said: “Saint Francis Hospice welcomes the opportunity to support a project that will give our homeless communities the opportunity to access their palliative care with us.

"We are working hard to ensure our services are inclusive and diverse for everyone who needs our care and support their families too."