Referral Criteria

Eligibility Criteria
Eligibility for referral to specialist palliative care services is based on patient need not diagnosis. 
  • The patient has active, progressive and usually advanced disease for which the prognosis is limited (although it may be several years) and the focus of care is quality of life. 
  • The patient has unresolved complex needs that cannot be met by the caring team. These needs may be physical, psychological, social and /or spiritual. Examples may include complicated symptoms, difficult family situations, or ethical issues regarding treatment decisions. 
Referrals should be made using the standard referral form here.

Admission Criteria 
The patient has been recently assessed by a member of one of the specialist palliative care teams. Patients who meet the above criteria may be admitted to any part of the specialist palliative care service as required. 
Discharge Criteria 
Patients who no longer meet the above criteria may be discharged from the specialist palliative care service. Patients can be re-referred if they subsequently meet the eligibility criteria. 

Sunflower Centre

The Sunflower Centre provides a range of wellbeing services for patients, their families and carers in our catchment area, living with progressive life-limiting conditions, including:

Heart failure 
Lung disease 
Neurological conditions 

Our team includes a senior Occupational Therapist, Complementary Therapists, Family Support Team, Spiritual Care, Nurse, Doctor, Lymphoedema Sister, Activities Co-ordinator, Physiotherapist, and Care Assistants.

Our care is holistic, looking after the whole person, helping with emotional and spiritual issues as well as physical symptoms. The Sunflower Centre also facilitates opportunities to talk with, and gain support from, others who are living with the effects of cancer or life-limiting conditions.

Most importantly, we hope to connect with more people earlier on in their diagnosis, so that they might increase their sense of wellbeing, knowledge and understanding of their condition, as well as access a range of support offered through the Sunflower Centre.

Referrals will be accepted from all healthcare professionals. Patients must agree to the referral. Each referral will be considered according to individual needs.

Once a referral to the Sunflower Centre has been accepted the patient will be offered an initial needs assessment to establish the support and input that best meets their needs. This may be on an individual or group basis, appointment, or workshop.

Please note that some therapies are appointment-based and offered on a time-limited basis.


The team provides specialist hands-on nursing care and support to patients who want to remain at home in the last few weeks of their life.  We work in partnership with GPs, District Nurses and MacMillan Nurses to provide this care. This service can be offered if it is appropriate, if you:
  • are approaching the end of life and would prefer to die at home;
  • are having difficulties at home and do not wish to be admitted to hospital or the Hospice;
  • are waiting for admission to a Hospice bed for symptom management or end of life care;
  • wish to be discharged from the hospital or Hospice to be cared for and die at home.
Contact us

If for any reason you wish to contact us regarding our input into your care you can do so at any time by telephoning St Leonard's Hospice on 01904 708553.