Accessibility statement

Informing staff support interventions and practices in children’s hospices (SWiCH)

In the UK, the children’s hospice sector has become increasingly concerned about levels of work-related stress among its staff. We therefore need to review and develop systems to enhance staff wellbeing and reduce the risk of occupational burnout. This stems in part from increasing evidence that staff wellbeing is associated with the quality, cost and safety of patient care. However, this is also about acknowledging the important role of those working in children’s hospices, which are a key provider of paediatric palliative care in the UK.

This study aims to:

  1. increase understanding about the work-related stressors and rewards experienced by children’s hospice staff
  2. identify staff support systems and organisational practices that offer the most potential to enhance wellbeing at work.

The study will firstly develop and validate a new tool to measure work-related stressors and rewards in children’s hospice staff, and then conduct a national survey of staff to describe the stressors and rewards they experience. We will also collect information from hospices so that we can identify organisational and employment characteristics that appear to influence these.

We will work in partnership with the children’s hospice sector to ensure that the knowledge generated from this study can be used to improve staff wellbeing and its associated outcomes.


Funder:  Martin House Research Centre
Start Date: January 2019
End Date: Sept 2020


Internal staff

External collaborators

  • Dr Jan Aldridge, Clinical Psychologist
  • Lizzie Chamber, Together for Short Lives
  • Michael Tatterton, University of Bradford

Public Health and Society Research in the Department of Health Sciences