Frequently Asked Questions

When someone goes to Hospice, does that mean they are going to die there?

Being referred to hospice means that you need specialist help. For some people it might mean using the specialist skills that we have to help solve a difficult problem that you may have. Hospice can help manage the problems you have at any given time and then it might be appropriate for you to be discharged from the service. If/when you need our help again, you can be referred again to the service.

If I'm referred to Hospice, does that mean I am dying? what does it mean to be referred to Hospice?

Being referred to Hospice means that the team looking after you has asked for some advice or assistance in caring for you. For some people it might mean using the specialist skills that we have to help solve a difficult problem that you may have. It might mean supporting you or your family emotionally. If you need ongoing help we are here, but you might decide that you don't need us then it might be appropriate for you to be discharged from the service.

What help/services can Hospice be/provide to me and my family?

Hospice prides itself on the range of services that it offers. These include: community care, inpatient care, shared care with other health professionals, social work, volunteer services, family support and chaplaincy support.

What is palliative Care?

Palliative care is a branch of health care that attends to only those with an advanced life-limiting illness. A life-limiting illness is one that has no cure. The focus of this area of care is the patients and their family/whanau's total care ie physical/tinana, social/whanaungatanga, emotional/hinengaro and spirtual/wairua wellbeing. Care is specific to each person and focuses on helping them to live the best that they can for as long as they are able. This care can be provided in home or in another place eg hospice, hospital or long term residential facility. Care is provided by a skilled team of health professionals lead by the specialists in palliative care - in this case, Hospice Taranaki multi disciplinary team.

What is it going to cost me? How is Hospice funded?

The care that Hospice Taranaki provides is free to patients. Hospice Taranaki has a contract with the Taranaki District Health Board to provide palliative services to the residents of the Taranaki region. This contract only covers about 50 - 60% of the cost of providing this service. The rest is funded by donations, income from HospiceShops, grants, fundraising and bequests.  Make a donation link

What is it like staying at Hospice? Can my family/pet stay with me?

While Hospice Taranaki is a specialist facility, the team at Te Rangimarie would like to think that you feel at home while staying in Te Rangimarie. Family and pets are welcome and there is a special Family/Whanau area for families to use during stays. Family members are welcome to stay with their loved one.  Although Te Rangimarie provides all bedding - you are welcome to bring your own duvet/pillows/cushion with you (we all have personal favourites). 

When does Hospice help stop?

As part of our care, we realise that the journey of the family/whanau goes on long after their loved one dies. For this reason, Hospice Taranaki bereavement support team keep in touch with the family/whanau to help them adapt to the losses as they move forward in their life without their loved one.

How long can I stay at the Hospice inpatient unit?

As Hospice Taranaki has only seven beds in Te Rangimarie and two beds in Hawera, we are unable to offer long term care. Admission to Hospice Taranaki is usually on a short term basis, based on need. If you need to stay longer or move to a long term residential facility, you and your family will be actively involved in the planning stages for this to happen.

What happens if I'm at home and need help at night or in the weekends?

Hospice Taranaki have a 24/7 phone line that you are able to ring for help- 06 753 7830. If you need further help one of our on call specialist nurses may visit you at home. Sometimes an after-hours doctor, or your GP may also be needed to be phoned or may need to visit.

I want to die quickly. Can Hospice help?

Hospice can help make you more comfortable but cannot help you to die quickly. Assisting someone to die is illegal. The Hospice philosophy sees dying as a natural part of living. We see it as our role neither to hasten nor postpone death.

How can I help Hospice? (Goods)

Every HospiceTalk newsletter has a "wishlist" of items that we need.  There is also the HospiceShops that are pleased to accept good in a saleable condition.  There is a collection service for larger items - HospiceShops

What does it mean to leave a Bequest?

One way to help Hospice Taranaki is to make a provision in your Will. Your Will should be properly written and witnessed for it to be legal. If you intend to donate in this generous way a special paragraph needs to be included in your Will. How Can I help link

Will my GP know what is happening?

Hospice Taranaki prides itself on the way that we involve all the members of your health care team in your care. We have processes in place to make sure that all involved in your care know what is happening and how they can help you.

Do I have to change doctors if I receive Hospice's care?

You can keep your same GP and use the services of Hospice Taranaki. Hospice works alongside your GP to give you the best care you can have at this time. If you are admitted to the Inpatient Unit our doctors will provide the care during your stay and inform your GP of any updates or changes in your care.

What does a volunteer do at Hospice?

Volunteers give generously of their time and skills for our organisation. They help in many areas including: inpatient unit support, community care of patients, administration support, biography service, gardening, catering,driving for patients, shop volunteers, fundraising, maintenance/building/odd job repairs, making crafts, floral art, and many job supporting the HospiceShops. Volunteering link

Is there a difference between Hospice and the Cancer Society?

Yes. The Cancer Society offers services to the people who are coping with the diagnosis and treatment of cancer in their families. Nurses who are qualified and experienced in cancer care provide support and information to newly diagnosed people and their families.

Do I have to have cancer in order to receive hospice care?

NO, Hospice Taranaki cares for people who have a life-limiting illness. This could be cancer, end stage heart, lung or renal disease, motor neurone disease, multiple Sclerosis, HIV/AIDS as well as other medical conditions for which there is no cure.

Can I take natural remedies as well as what Hospice advises?

Many people choose to use natural/alternative/complementary remedies alongside main stream medicine. It is important that you are open and honest with the Hospice Taranaki Team about what you are taking. Sometimes there maybe interactions between mainstream medicine and the ones you are taking so it is important that we know so we can research this and advise you about this.

I don't want too many people coming into my home. How do you work with other services?

This time is a hectic time for you and your family. You will need help at some stage throughout your journey. Hospice works together with other providers of care to minimize the impact of health visitors to your home. If you are feeling swamped, let us know and we can discuss what your needs are at any given time.

Where do I have to go to get Hospice help?

Our team is available to you in a number of ways; you can dial our 24 hour telephone service (06 753 7830), a member of our team can visit you in your own home of alternatively you may wish to visit members of the team at Te Rangimarie as well.

Isn't it true that if I go into Hospice (Te Rangimarie), I won't go home?

Patients with acute needs can be cared for in Te Rangimarie Hospice. Once their condition has improved they may go back home again. Sometimes, carers need a break and admission to the inpatient unit (Te Rangimaire) is a good short-term solution. Patients may also choose to die in Te Rangimarie, if dying at home is not the preferred option or not possible. 

If I start morphine, doesn't that mean I am dying?

Not at all. Morphine is one of a range of pain relieving medicines available to you to help with managing pain. Many people are living well with Morphine as part of their medicine regimen. It is not a drug to be feared. Keeping in control of pain using medicines such as Morphine can help to make life more comfortable and allow you to continue to do what you want to in life. If you are prescribed Morphine the nurses/doctors can answer any questions you may have to help alleviate any reservations you may have.

Are my donations to Hospice Taranaki tax deductable?

Hospice Taranaki is a registered charitable organisation. Any donations over $5 can be claimed on your tax return. If you are GST registered, you can not claim GST on any donations.

Is Hospice Taranaki affiliated with any religious group? My beliefs/culture is very important to me.

Hospice Taranaki is not affiliated with any religious group. The care that Hospice Taranaki provides respects that religion can be very important to people therefore we will support you to practice what is important to you.