This article was first published in the June issue of Channel Magazine. It is the first in a series of columns created to share progress of this vital community project at Shea Terrace, Takapuna with our dedicated supporters. 

Written by Jan Nichols, CEO Harbour Hospice.

It’s not unusual for people to resist contacting Harbour Hospice, fearing it means the end of the road. But invariably, those who accept Hospice care wish they had done it sooner.

Many are surprised to find that, with support from Harbour Hospice, their life improves beyond expectation.

This is because everything we do is firmly focused on living. Our clinical and support teams care for around 1,200 patients and their families every year, with the goal of helping them live every moment in whatever way is important to them.

While managing pain and other symptoms are a priority, we place equal importance on cultural, emotional, spiritual and social needs – fundamentals that many of us appreciate more than ever after weeks of lockdown.

One patient may receive care from several of our team members, including specialist doctors and nurses, counsellors, cultural and spiritual carers, social workers and complementary therapists. Most patients wish to be at home with their loved ones and a vital part of our work involves supporting their families to achieve this.

Our teams will support patients and families with around 16,000 visits this year, and our Community Palliative Care Nurses will travel more than 130,000 kilometres to care for patients at home.

Around 500 patients will spend a few days in our Inpatient Units, where our clinical team will review and adjust medications to manage complex symptoms, give family members ‘time off’ to rest and restore their energy, or provide a comforting environment at the end of life.

We are deeply grateful for the ongoing support we receive from our generous and compassionate community of donors and volunteers, who help us raise essential service costs and nourish our patients with their care and companionship. I look forward to sharing our progress on this bold project with you, as we shape the future of hospice care on the North Shore together.

YOUR FUTURE HOSPICE

Demand for palliative care across the Harbour Hospice region is expected to grow by 50% in the next 14 years, and 90% in the next 40 years.

It may surprise you to learn that one in three people who die locally receive Hospice services, and with our growing and ageing population comes an increasing need for local palliative care.

Because of this unprecedented growth, and an urgent need to upgrade facilities, your Hospice in Shea Terrace, Takapuna is undergoing a major redevelopment which is planned to commence in late 2020.

Plans involve a reclad of the Inpatient Unit, six new inpatient bedrooms, redesign of outpatient and family / whānau spaces, and a state-of-the-art community centre for programmes that support patients to live well at home.

For more detailed information, the latest news and updates on this bold community project, click here to view our dedicated Your Future Hospice section on the website.