Skip to main content

Alert COVID-19

Please find service updates and current visiting rules in our COVID-19 section.

This site is best viewed with a modern browser. You appear to be using an old version of Internet Explorer.

Clinical services

Our hospices

Sobell House Hospice and Katharine House Hospice provide high quality palliative and end of life care for the people of Oxfordshire and South Northamptonshire.

We provide this specialist care to those over the age of 18 who have an advanced life-limiting illness.

On both sites, care is delivered by a large multidisciplinary team of specialists in this field who take a holistic approach, considering the physical, psychosocial and spiritual needs of all individuals.

Our multidisciplinary team includes a large number of professionals, including:

  • medical and nursing staff
  • pharmacists
  • social workers
  • occupational therapists
  • music and art therapist
  • complementary therapists
  • bereavement support workers
  • physiotherapist
  • chaplains
  • volunteers
  • psychiatrists
  • administrators.

We want to reassure our patients that they are in safe hands, and receiving care from experienced, knowledgeable and sensitive people who will support them to achieve the help they need.

We want our patients to feel fulfilled and live life to the full for as long as possible.

Our team

Clinical Lead

Dr Victoria Bradley

Victoria Bradley

Consultants

  • Prof Bee Wee
  • Dr Matt Carey
  • Dr Tim Harrison
  • Dr Victoria Hedges
  • Dr Mary Miller
  • Dr Charlie Bond

Associate Specialists

  • Dr Jane Stickland
  • Dr Julia Bartley
  • Dr Ros Henderson

Specialty Doctors

  • Dr Sarah Hanrott
  • Dr Michelle Fletcher
  • Dr Tanya Greenway
  • Dr Husna Munsoor

Consultant in Psychological Medicine

Dr Tom Bajorek

Palliative Care Deputy Matron

Helen Disley: helen.disley@ouh.nhs.uk

Helen Disley

Lead Specialist Nurse for Palliative Care

Mary Walding: mary.walding@ouh.nhs.uk

Mary Walding

Living Well and Supportive Care Lead

Vacant

Bereavement Care and Voluntary Services Lead

Srinder Singh: srinder.singh@ouh.nhs.uk

Srinder Singh

Inpatient care

Oxford University Hospitals has two hospice wards for patients with specialist palliative care needs across Oxfordshire and South Northamptonshire.

  • Katharine House Hospice Inpatient Unit
    A 10-bed ward in Katharine House Hospice in Adderbury, Banbury
  • Sobell House Hospice Inpatient Unit
    An 18-bed ward in Sobell House Hospice on the Churchill Hospital site in Oxford.

Both departments are staffed by experienced and committed palliative care professionals, dedicated to ensuring the best possible care for our vulnerable patient group.

We welcome student nurse, student paramedic and medical student placements, and value the time we have to teach and share our experiences with our future workforce.

24/7 care is delivered by a broad multidisciplinary team, including:

  • Nurses
  • Doctors
  • Chaplains
  • Music and Art Therapists
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physiotherapists
  • Social Workers

Contact us

Sobell House Hospice

  • Inpatient Unit: 01865 225873
  • Reception: 01865 225860

Katharine House Hospice

  • Inpatient Unit: 01295 229940
  • Reception: 01295 228528

Sobell House Ward Sister

Alicia Hulewicz: alicia.hulewicz@ouu.nhs.uk

Katharine House Ward Sister

Helen Fletcher: helen.fletcher@ouh.nhs.uk

Visiting

Please see Visitor FAQs and contact us if you have any queries.

Community care

Community palliative care aims to provide specialist support to patients within their own home (including care homes, nursing homes and wherever the patient may reside).

The team comprises nurses, doctors, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, a pharmacist and a benefits adviser.

All members of the team have specialist training and experience in caring for patients who have a life-limiting illness.

In Oxfordshire and South Northamptonshire, the Community Specialist Palliative Care Nurses work as one team, from two bases in the two hospices in the county.

Community palliative care support is based on an in-depth assessment. As part of this we ask patients to complete a brief questionnaire, then explore concerns in more depth.

This specialist support may involve:

  • symptom control - we work with GPs and other healthcare staff to advise on medication and other help to improve difficult symptoms which are troublesome for patients
  • support for the individual and the people who are most important to them - this may mean referral to other organisations that can help
  • advice about benefits and other sources of financial support
  • support with planning for the future.

'Myth buster'

  • Referral to specialist palliative care is not a 'secret code' that you are dying in a short timeframe - we see patients at any stage in their illness and are here to help improve quality of life.
  • Referral to specialist palliative care will not cause death - indeed, the evidence is that it not only improves quality of life but also that people who have palliative care involvement will live longer.
  • Once referred, you are not a 'palliative care patient' - we often provide short-term support and discharge patients who can then be re-referred if things change, and they need more support.
  • Dying patients do not all need specialist palliative care referrals. All healthcare professionals have experience of caring for people who are dying. GPs and district nurses have particular expertise, but sometimes things are complex, and patients and families require more specialist support for a while.

Home Hospice Care Team

The Home Hospice Care Team delivers care to end of life patients in their own homes during the last few weeks of their life, or as short-term crisis intervention until care can be provided by another care agency.

Support is offered with personal care, dressing, food preparation and repositioning, with the overall aim that the patient can remain in their own home to die, if this is their wish.

Patients are referred into the Home Hospice Care Team by a doctor or nurse involved in their care. Once a referral is received a Home Hospice Care Assessor will visit the patient to complete a holistic assessment. Following the initial assessment care visits are scheduled and care is delivered by trained Patient Support Workers.

The Home Hospice Care Team covers Oxfordshire and South Northamptonshire, with bases at the Horton General Hospital and at Unipart House in Oxford.

If you would like a referral, please discuss this with your GP or a health professional involved in your care.

Palliative Care Hub

The Hub comprises doctors, nurses and administrators, and will take messages, answer queries and offer support and advice.

After referral to the Hub

After a referral, a Community Specialist Palliative Care Nurse will contact the patient / their advocate and check for urgent issues. We will arrange for an assessment appointment, usually with a nurse, sometimes with a doctor, or both.

This can be in person at the patient's home, a hospice or GP surgery, or virtual via Attend Anywhere or telephone.

At the end of the assessment, we develop a care plan with the patient and the people important to them. This can be reviewed at a later stage. With patient consent, we will share this with other healthcare professionals.

It is important to us to treat people as individuals and enable them to live as well as possible in the time they have and achieve their own goals.

The patient's GP is responsible for care at home, requesting our palliative care advice when needed but remaining the key healthcare professional responsible for prescribing medication in the community.

The hospital team is responsible for any treatment that they advise. Some patients also have a Specialist Nurse linked to their condition who can offer support.

If a patient's symptoms improve, and they no longer need our support, we can discharge them from our service. However, if the situation changes, patients or their carers can contact us for advice, and be referred back to our service at any time.

Contact the Palliative Care Hub

Telephone

Tel: 01865 857036
Seven days a week 9.00am - 5.00pm
Out of hours (after 5.00pm) contact 111

We are not an emergency service: if your need is urgent call your GP surgery or 111.

They will have access to the right support and can contact the on-call palliative care doctor if necessary.

Patients currently under the care of the Palliative Care Hub should make 111 staff aware of this, as it can speed access to the right support.

Email

PalliativeCareHub@ouh.nhs.uk

Emails are checked every day. We do not give out individual emails or mobile numbers, as these are not checked when the member of staff is off duty.

When to contact the Hub

  • You have a question about your symptoms or advice the team has given.
  • There has been a change in your symptoms. If this is a significant change we may advise a GP assessment. If you have a new symptom it is more likely we will advise you contact your GP.
  • You want to change an arrangement you have made with a team member.
  • You want to update a team member on your situation.

When to call elsewhere

  • Out of hours call 111.
  • For urgent help ring 999.
  • For prescription renewal (even if originally advised by the team) - contact GP surgery.
  • For District Nurses: 01865 903750.

If the patient is in hospital or a hospice ward, please call the hospital or hospice for information, as the Community Palliative Care Team will not have up-to-date details.

Hospital Palliative Care Team

Our Hospital Palliative Care Team provides support to people facing life limiting illness in hospital.

Our team comprises specialist palliative care doctors, nurses, occupational therapists and other professionals based on our hospital sites working alongside the teams at Katharine and Sobell House hospices.

Our team provides support to adult patients within the John Radcliffe Hospital, Churchill Hospital, Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre and Horton General Hospital, working alongside ward staff in an advisory capacity.

We can:

  • help with physical symptoms to diminish the distress these might cause
  • offer emotional and practical support and advice to patients and their loved ones relating to their illness
  • help patients and their loved ones make plans for the future
  • liaise with other health care professionals involved in care in the hospital, at home or from other centres
  • support discharge from hospital to the most appropriate place for ongoing care where this is appropriate.

Contact us

Churchill Hospital / NOC: 01865 223585
Monday to Friday 9.00am - 5.00pm

John Radcliffe Hospital: 01865 221741
Monday to Sunday 9.00am - 5.00pm

Horton General Hospital: 01295 224195
Monday to Friday 9.00am - 4.30pm

Oxford Lymphoedema Service

Lymphoedema is a swelling caused by a build up of lymph fluid within the tissue space of a part of the body. This occurs if the lymph nodes and lymph vessels that carry the lymph fluid away are not working properly.

It can be hereditary, or caused by trauma or treatments, and can affect any part of the body from head and neck to feet and toes.

Lipoedema is a condition where abnormal fat cells cause excess fatty adipose tissue. It commonly affects the hips and legs, but can affect arms as well. It mainly affects women and can be very painful.

Some people have a combination of lipoedema and lymphoedema. There is no cure for either - they are long-term (chronic) conditions. However, with the right treatment symptoms can be improved and managed well.

Clinics

Oxford Lymphoedema Service is led by Specialist Nurses and has two clinics. We offer advice, treatments and education, and support patients to self-manage their condition.

Sobell House clinic

Monday to Friday and evenings, for patients with cancer- and non-cancer-related lymphoedema, and patients with lipoedema.

Katharine House clinic

Remote clinics three days a week, for patients with cancer-related lymphoedema.

Referrals

If you would like a referral, please discuss this with your GP or a health professional involved in your care. Upon referral to our Lymphoedema Clinic one of our Specialist Nurses will assess you.

Contact us

Tel: 01865 225864
Email: oxford.lymphoedemaclinic@nhs.net

Art and music therapy

Art and music therapy are two very special services we offer, which are entirely funded by charitable donations.

Hannah Cridford, art therapist, and Tom Crook, music therapist, offer emotional and psychological support to our patients and their families. Hannah and Tom work across all departments within the hospices, at home, on our wards, in local hospitals and as part of our Living Well Service.

Living Well and Supportive Care Service

Our Living Well and Supportive Care Service aims to enhance the wellbeing of people affected by life-limiting illness. Our multi-professional team offers a varied programme within a compassionate, inclusive and supportive environment.

We enable and empower people to live well, by equipping them with the skills and knowledge to help them achieve their goals and to live day to day with a sense of purpose.

We understand that people have different needs, and wellbeing means different things to different people; we therefore offer a range of support and activity, so that everyone can find something right for them.

When you first access the service, we will work alongside you to find the elements of our programme that you feel will be most beneficial, and together create a personalised eight-week programme.

You may wish to:

  • meet other people in a similar situation
  • access support from our specialist team
  • learn skills to maintain your independence
  • build confidence towards achieving a particular goal

increase your knowledge and understanding of your illness and how to manage your symptoms.

Contact us

Email: pallcarelivingwell@ouh.nhs.uk

Tel: 01295 228500 (Katherine House)

Tel: 01865 225875 (Sobell House)

Referrals

Self-referral / non-healthcare referrals

Please complete the Living Well registration form.

GP and clinical community referrals

Please contact the Palliative Care Hub.

Social Care Services

Our Social Care Services team includes:

  • social workers
  • benefits advisor
  • administrative support.

We help patients, families and hospice staff with psychological, social and financial concerns, and also refer them to the Living Well, Hospital and Community teams.

Our social workers can help with arranging funding and care providers at home or in nursing homes and our benefits advisor can assist patients and families in the community through a home visiting programme.

We offer a teaching programme for our staff to help them improve their skills in palliative care.

Last reviewed:23 May 2022