What can hospice do for me?
The diagnosis of Cancer, HIV, liver or renal failure or Motor Neuron Disease is extremely traumatic. Stepping Stone Hospice offers support, hope and comfort to those individuals who find themselves in this situation. We provide counseling, assistance at home and inpatient facilities and do everything possible to ease the burdens which are placed on the patient and the family.
When should I contact hospice?
As soon as you are diagnosed with a life-limiting disease
Is my culture and /or religion a criteria for admission to the Stepping Stone Hospice programme?
Stepping Stone Hospice cares for all, regardless of culture, creed and religion. The only criteria is that you are diagnosed with a “life-limiting” disease
If I feel well, do I still need to register with hospice?
Yes. This will give us an opportunity to familiarize ourselves with your medical history and to get to know you and your family, so that if the time comes when you are not feeling so well, we can step in and assist you without you having to go through the process of registration.
Will my own doctor be able to care for me?
Yes. We will liaise with your doctor regarding your treatment, and we will carry out his/her orders accordingly.
Who will care for me from Hospice?
Professional Nurses who are trained in Palliative Care will look after you in the in-patient unit and visit you at home. We also have trained Caregivers in the in-patient unit. Trained volunteers are available to act as an added support on our programmes.
Will my circumstances and diagnosis remain confidential?
Yes. Stepping Stone Hospice works with a Professional multidisciplinary team of nurses, doctors, social workers and counselors. Information regarding patients remains confidential within this team.
When are patients admitted to the Inpatient unit?
The Inpatient unit is available for those patients who have severe side effects and symptoms as a result of treatment or the disease itself. Patients are admitted to the unit to bring these symptoms under control.
The in-patient unit is also used to provide respite for families when they are unable to adequately cope with the circumstances. At such times, we can accommodate a stay of up to fourteen days for the patient. Patients are also admitted to the in-patient unit for complex end-of-life care or when a terminal patient, their doctor and their family feel that it is time for the patient to be admitted.
What is palliative care?
Palliative Care improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing problems associated with life-threatening illness, through the prevention and relief of suffering, by means of early identification and assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, physical, psychosocial and spiritual.
Does receiving hospice care mean giving up hope?
No. We all need hope to survive, and Hospice promotes realistic hope for the patient and family. When the emphasis shifts from curing to caring, Hospice focuses on selected treatments that control pain and other distressing symptoms. The patient can thus retain dignity and enjoy an enhanced quality of life.
Does hospice provide any care for my family?
Yes. We understand the enormous strain that a family is subjected to and offer counseling, advice and any other support which may be necessary.
What will it cost me?
If you have a medical aid, medical aid rates will be billed. Non-medical aid patients will be charged a basic minimum fee. The clinical administrator will discuss this with the family and advise accordingly.
If I move are there other Hospices to which I may be referred?
Hospice is an international organisation. Stepping Stone Hospice is a member of the Hospice Palliative Care Association of South Africa. We are a member of the Gauteng Province Hospice Palliative Care Association. Most cities and towns have a Hospice, and we would refer you to a member hospice. Many organisations call themselves Hospices, but you should always establish whether they are registered with HPCA, the national body, to ensure that you receive the required high standard of Palliative Care.
How can I get involved with hospice work?
We rely heavily on volunteers to help us with home care, bereavement support, fundraising and anywhere else where you feel you could make a contribution. In order to become a volunteer, please phone us.
How does Hospice raise funds to sustain itself?
Stepping Stone Hospice raises funds in the local community through fundraising events. We have one charity shop which sells second hand clothes, ornaments and other goods, and the revenue from the sale of these donated goods is an extremely valuable source of income.
Financial donations and bequests are also an integral part of our funding, as are the funds generated by our training department. Local, national and international organisations are approached through proposals to fund specific projects and for the purchase of assets.