Hospice Funerals LLP is offering hospices the chance to become a partner and provide ‘in-house’ undertaking services under the one brand name.
The Good Funeral Guide wrote to the boards of trustees of every hospice in the UK to share its concerns about Hospice Funerals LLP this week.
Ann Lee, joint managing partner of Hospice Funerals, said in response: “We believe our new funeral service is a logical extension of the end of life care these charities provide, which will help to secure the future of hospices by offering families a seamless, compassionate and high quality service at a critical time.
“At a time when government funding is being squeezed and demand for end of life care is increasing due to the UK’s ageing population, hospices need to find new sources of sustainable funding.
“As someone who has worked in the hospice movement for the last 18 years, as a senior nurse, director of clinical services and now CEO, I am absolutely clear that patients and their families will be under no pressure whatsoever to use Hospice Funerals – just as they are not pressured into making donations when receiving hospice care, buying Christmas cards, playing a hospice lottery or visiting hospice charity shops.”
Ann added: “I believe it is disingenuous of the Good Funeral Guide to suggest it has the best interests of hospices at heart, when it appears to be more concerned with protecting the commercial interests of those who fear increased competition in the funeral market. The Good Funeral Guide purports to be ‘wholly independent of the funeral industry’. In reality, its CEO is a former funeral director and it markets its own prepaid funeral plan. We find it strange that a supposedly independent information resource has chosen to orchestrate a campaign to undermine Hospice Funerals before the company has served its first customer. At no point has the Good Funeral Guide contacted us to raise any concerns or find out more about our plans.
“I would encourage people to consider the motives of those who have been so quick to attack an initiative which will help to both support and fund vital end of life care in our communities while offering families increased choice when it comes to planning a funeral.”