End of life care is healthcare, treatment and support for an individual who has a life-limiting or progressive illness or condition that cannot be cured. Services provided by Rowans Hospice begin months and sometimes years before death, when it becomes clear that things are progressing. Our end of life care helps the person to have the best quality of life, ensuring everything possible is done to support family and friends too.
We offer short stay admissions of assessment, treatment, and care within our hospice in Waterlooville for people experiencing life-limiting and progressive illness, with the aim of maintaining optimal quality of life for as long as this may be possible. Our specialist hospice team, comprising doctors, nurses, and other professionals, such as social workers, physiotherapists, occupational and complementary therapists provide physical, psychological, spiritual, and social care. People receiving end of life treatment and care, including care in dying, will have their own en-suite bedroom with a view of our beautiful gardens and access from the room out into our tranquil surroundings.
Furthermore, we strongly believe that hospice care should be available outside of a dedicated building and therefore our Hospice at Home service provides end of life care in the comfort of your own home. Right up until the end of a person’s life, our care is about helping people live every moment to the full in comfort and dignity and alongside those who are important to them.
Additional services are provided to enhance the quality of life for the people living in Portsmouth and South East Hampshire through Rowans Living Well Services. Here drop-in support, telephone advice and therapeutic activities are offered both on site and on-line for those affected by life-limiting and progressive illness, which includes family members, carers, and friends. The range of therapies is vast, and people can choose what feels right for them. When connectivity with others may be therapeutic, we host dedicated groups – for example, we host a group for veterans and another for gardeners.
From our experience, we acknowledge and appreciate the many difficulties and challenges people affected by life-limiting and progressive illness will be facing and all our staff and skilled volunteers will be receptive and available to listen and support. This includes a dedicated team of Psychological therapists, Counsellors and Family Service Volunteers who specialise in this area of practise, including specialist support for young people and children who are or will soon be bereaved.
Our Spiritual Care Chaplain complements the spiritual support provided by other members of the specialist team, offering support time to talk and to help people explore thoughts, feelings, questions, and doubts.
Advance care planning may be a daunting exercise to consider, however we are here to help. Our experience demonstrates that thinking and detailing what is right for you will help all those around you to plan ahead and do all that is possible to enable you to receive the care and treatment that is right for you. This is especially helpful if you are unable to voice your own wishes and preferences and will be particularly helpful to your own family and friends.
Importantly this can include where you would prefer to die, as knowing this in advance will help everyone prepare and prevent inappropriate and unnecessary hospital admissions.
If you don’t have a Will already, it is advisable to get one written to confirm what you would like to happen to your possessions, money, and property. You can write the Will yourself but to make it legal, you are best advised to get it witnessed and signed. For more information, see the gov website. A dedicated Citizens Advice service is available by appointment through the Rowans Living Well Services, or you could contact a local solicitor. (could link to Make a Will Week).
If you feel you may be unable to make decisions in the future related to your own treatment and care, you can appoint someone who would know your wishes and could then advocate your best interests. This is called a lasting power of attorney. For more information on registering for one, see the gov website. A dedicated Citizens Advice service is also available by appointment through the Rowans Living Well Services, or you could contact a local solicitor.
Rowans Hospice offers end of life care training for health and social care professionals. Training is delivered by experts, and we have a wide variety of courses available. We also provide education downloads. Please see our end of life care training page for more information.
Palliative care is healthcare, treatment and support for people who have life limiting and progressive illness which cannot be cured. Palliative care can be received at any stage of a person’s illness and can continue for years. Rowans Hospice Strategy references the importance of the last 1000 days of life. End of life care on the other hand is for those in the last year, months, or weeks of their life.
End of life care at Rowans Hospice is ‘holistic’ and includes physical, spiritual, psychological, and emotional interventions and support for the person who is dying and all those who are important to them.
We advocate the importance of advance care planning and clearly stating your wishes, choice, and preference of where and how you wish to be cared for in the last months of your life. This can include where you would choose to be cared for if possible and treatments which you would wish to refuse, such as feeding through a tube or being nursed on a breathing machine (ventilator) and any other considerations to reflect your cultural practices and spiritual beliefs. Most people will want to discuss deciding against CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) so that they can have a supported, natural death.
Writing a Will is advisable as it will make sure that your possessions, property, and money is distributed according to your wishes, supporting those you care for and other worthwhile causes. This will need to be witnessed and signed. For advice on writing a will, see the gov website. A dedicated Citizens Advice service is available by appointment through the Rowans Living Well Services, or you could contact a local solicitor.
If you are too unwell to make decisions on your care, a lasting power of attorney will be someone who can make decisions for you, they need to have been appointed at an earlier time in readiness, they may never need to use the power but nominating someone means that you and they are prepared. Find out more information on the gov website. A dedicated Citizens Advice service is also available by appointment through the Rowans Living Well Services, or you could contact a local solicitor.
No, hospice services can be provided months or even years before a person is nearing the end of their life. Rowans Hospice Strategy references care and support in the last 1000 days of life.
Specialised Hospice at Home and In-patient services involve a professional referral and sometimes a discharge back to appropriate and less specialised services. Your GP and hospital or community nurses understand this process and you can talk to one of our open-access services about our criteria (numbers LWC and hub).
No, we have a Hospice at Home team which will provide visits to your home, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (in the last weeks of life) and the Rowans Living Well Services. It is also important to stress that hospices work alongside GPs, NHS and social care professionals and other charities who collectively form an integrated care team.
Stating your choice and preference in advance will help you achieve this and enables all those supporting your treatment and care to work towards having your wishes fulfilled as far as this may be possible.
Writing an Advance Care Plan in conjunction with family members, friends and health care professionals will help. So, if this circumstance were to arise, everyone would know exactly how you want to be looked after.
Yes, you can. This could be a family member, friend or guardian and all health care establishments should respect your wishes.
Yes, you can refuse treatment. You should complete an advance decision to receive treatment so that if you feel you may be unable to communicate your wishes in the future, your loved ones and carers know what treatment you wish to refuse. For more information, see the NHS website. A dedicated Citizens Advice service is also available by appointment through the Rowans Living Well Services or you could contact a local solicitor.