Haven House features in a film supporting NHS England’s Long Term Plan and its ambitions around how healthcare is delivered over the coming decade.

The film demonstrates the importance of integrated working in improving outcomes for children with life-limiting conditions and their families. Featured in the film is one of the hospice’s teenagers Ryan, who was diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma and was successfully treated due to early diagnosis. It shows a number of paediatric services including hospital, community and hospice, working together to meet Ryan’s needs and allowing him to be cared for closer to home.

Survival rates for children and young people with cancer have doubled over the past 40 years but cancer is now the biggest cause of death in 5 to 14-year-olds. The much-anticipated Plan aims to increase early cancer diagnosis and invest in new treatments, helping more people to survive cancer with the best quality of life.

Haven House’s Director of Care Eileen White said the NHS England’s vision and ambition for the way in which healthcare is delivered over the coming decade is crucial to seriously ill children and their families.

“NHS England has set out a range of measures which have potential to bring about real change. It is crucial that, as a result of the new plan, babies, children and young people with long term conditions, disabilities and complex needs will have greater choice and control over the care they receive.”

Eileen White, Director of Care at Haven House

An essential component to the Plan is ensuring that children and young people are introduced to hospices, such as Haven House, soon after their diagnosis so that they have access to specialist expertise which has proved valuable during treatment and beyond. This can only be made possible by working together with our NHS colleagues and other palliative care services, to simplify pathways, and transitions promoting seamless care.

Early referrals to Haven House has enabled young people, like Ryan, to benefit from the holistic care services the hospice offers such as physiotherapy, therapeutic yoga, music therapy, psychological support and peer support through the teenage cancer group. Ryan, 13, speaks about coming to the Woodford Green Hospice to meet young people of his age who were going through something similar and sharing their experiences.

Two of the key areas of the Plan are ‘delivering services in the community’ and ‘integration’. Haven House has taken major strides in implementing a Hospice at Home service, which delivers personalised and specialist care in a child’s home.

Mrs White added: “We aim to reduce avoidable emergency hospital admissions and enable more children and families to have greater choice and control over how and where their care is delivered. We have worked collaboratively with our NHS colleagues to ensure three children and young people with cancer have had the choice to die at home over the last 18 months. Without this integrated approach this would not have been possible.”

Find out more about NHS England's Long Term Plan here.