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Oban Hospice
About Us

Our Story

Background and Development

The late Betty Dunlop, a retired nurse, encouraged by a few years of public discussion in the late 90’s, proposed a formal arrangement for Palliative care in the Lorn and Oban area; the setting up of our own hospice. A Public meeting was convened, extremely well attended, and resulted in the formation of Oban Hospice Limited, a Charity and company limited by Guarantee.

Prior to this movement, palliative care was being provided in the McKelvie Hospital, a small Victorian era cottage hospital in Oban, when, in the late 1980’s the male ward was converted into a two bedded dedicated palliative care unit with Sister Maureen Munroe in charge. This arrangement worked exceptionally well and was both appreciated and popular with patients, relatives and cares. For the next five years occupancy rates were high and there was hope that this excellent local arrangement would move to the new hospital, The Lorn and Islands District General Hospital, when it opened, and the McKelvie closed in 2000. Initially two beds were allocated in the Nelson Ward (Ward D) of the new hospital but were not reserved or developed for palliative care and were not formally transferred when Ward D shut in April 2002.

Following the formation of Oban Hospice Limited a group of local enthusiasts formed The Friends of Oban Hospice, a separate independent charity, to spread knowledge of the hospice and to raise funds. Thanks to their admirable efforts, and the generosity of the public, considerable funds have been raised.

Agreement was reached initially with NHS Argyll and Clyde and later with NHS Highland for Oban Hospice Ltd to set and run a Day Hospice one day a week. This was successfully opened in 2006 within the Lorn & Islands Hospital and continues today under the care of a nurse, a health care/occupational therapy assistant and a very willing body of volunteers. It was very much appreciated by the patients. It closed in 2017 when THE DOVE CENTRE opened.

Some would have liked to see an inpatient facility, but over the years it became clear that not enough funding was raised to make this a viable option. Furthermore there is a general direction of travel to provide as many services at home now. This is why Oban Hospice decided to open up a drop-in centre in Stevenson St.

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