SERVICES provided by St Anne's Hospice in Newport have been taken over by St David's Hospice Care.

The latter will now run the hospice - in the grounds of St Joseph's Hospital in Malpas, and which has 10 in-patient beds - in addition to its own established community and hospice-at-home services.

And fundraisers for St Anne's Hospice are being urged by St David's Hospice care chief executive Emma Saysell to keep up the good work.

"It costs £1.2 million a year to run the (St Anne's) Hospice. It gets some NHS support, but a huge amount of money needs to be raised every year," said Mrs Saysell.

"Overnight, St David's Hospice Care has gone from being a £6m a year organisation to one of £7.2m, and I would ask the public to keep up their generous support.

"My fear is people will think that because St David's is taking over, they no longer need to fundraise. That would be a disaster. We need them to keep going."

St David's Hospice Care, which looks after more than 2,600 patients a year, plans to keep the St Anne's Hospice name for the inpatient service, and recognised the work of the Sisters of St Joseph, who set up the hospice in the early 1990s. The existing hospice building was opened in 1994.

"It is important to recognise the hard work of the Sisters over many years, to get the hospice to the point it is at now," said Mrs Saysell.

"It is important for people to know St David's Hospice Care will run it now, but there is no need to change the St Anne's Hospice name. It is a good brand with a good reputation, and we want to build on that.

"We can bring our services closer together and that is very good news for those we care for. Hopefully, we can avoid people having to go into the acute sector, if we know about patients in the community who need an inpatient bed.

"The St David's Hospice Care motto - Bringing Care Home - still stands. We have a proven track record of providing high quality care in the community and an inpatient service can only improve things."

The plan to transfer St Anne's Hospice to St David's Hospice Care was announced in March. Dwindling numbers within the Sisters of St Joseph was cited as the key reason.