THE charity St Luke's Healthcare for the Clergy is to offer
hospital care once again, for the first time since the forced sale
of its hospital.
It has formed a partnership with Burrswood Christian Hospital in
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, to provide post-operative care for the
clergy, for up to ten days. It is also looking at buying into the
hospital's psychological care service.
The trustees of St Luke's were forced to sell its hospital in
2009, owing to a fall in donations and the impact of the financial
crisis. After the £7-million sale, the charity was left with just
£600,000 in assets.
It later relaunched itself with the aim of continuing to provide
access for the clergy to its honorary consultants, but with a new
pledge to improve access for the clergy to mental-health
professionals, to help them with stress-relief.
Since the loss of its hospital, St Luke's has continued to offer
appointments with its honorary consultants, and more than 100
appointments have been made since March.
The executive director of St Luke's, Neil Stevenson, said that
the partnership with Burrswood was a "very positive step
"Historically, St Luke's provided post-operative care, and it
will be wonderful to be able to do this again, as well as taking
advantage of all the other things Burrswood can offer."
Burrswood is a 40-bed non- surgical hospital, with more than 100
acres of grounds.
Mr Stevenson said that the partnership had been formed to "try
to meet the needs of our patients".
"We are getting back to what we are all about - care for
clergy," he said.