Otago Community Hospice found in every corner of Otago
Otago Community Hospice’s specialist service for around 800 terminally ill patients annually can be found 24/7 throughout Otago – from Waitaki through to Upper Clutha, across to Tapanui and down to Owaka and the Catlins.
Hospice CEO, Ginny Green says for this year’s Hospice Awareness Week the organisation wants to celebrate the depth of palliative service that can be found in Otago.
“I often hear from people surprised that our service extends beyond our Inpatient Unit in the North East Valley in Dunedin.
“But that’s what our service is nowadays - everywhere. We have 40 staff specially trained in palliative care - nurses, doctors, counsellors, kaimahi wairua/spiritual care workers, social workers, cultural advisors and educators - working in your corner of Otago - supporting those who are dying, to live well to the end.
“And yes, we do have the inpatient unit, which is essentially an acute admitting unit for patients experiencing really complex symptoms that are not being managed at home. We can bring them in to get them back on track, and then more often than not, they return home and continue being supported by our community team. It may surprise many that only around a third of our patients will ever require an admission.”
Hospice Awareness Week – which runs from May 15th to 21st – is also about sharing patient and whānau stories, under the Hospice New Zealand “it’s ok to feel how you feel” campaign. Local business owner Haley Cron features in a video for this campaign, sharing her experience of hospice care and encouraging people to talk about dying.