Frequently Asked Questions

Q  What geographic area does Overstrand Hospice serve?

Overstrand Hospice serves the Overstrand municipal area with a population of approximately 100,000 people. This stretches along a 150km coastal belt from Rooi Els to Pearly Beach. Hermanus (approximately 150kms from Cape Town) is the centre where the offices and support staff are based. 

Q  What range of services does Overstrand Hospice offer?

Services range from the medical aspects of patient symptom control to psychological, spiritual and social counselling and companioning for both patient and family.  Counselling and companioning are only provided if it is the wish of the patient or the family. The support for the family is extended into the bereavement period if desired.

Q  Does hospice only care for patients with cancer?

No. We have developed an infrastructure primarily for the holistic care of terminally ill cancer patients, but we also accept patients suffering from progressive neurological diseases in an advanced stage, as well as those with end stage organ disease.

Q  Who qualifies for hospice assistance?

Patients who meet the hospice admission criteria must be referred by their doctor or a professional nurse. All such persons so referred qualify for assistance. There are no restrictions based on race, creed or economic circumstances.
A patient referral form must be completed by the doctor or professional nurse caring for someone requiring Hospice assistance. If required, please contact the office for more information.

Q  Where is the Hospice and how many beds do you have?

Overstrand Hospice provides a home based palliative care service. Experience shows that most terminally ill patients prefer to be cared for in their own home. If the need arises, Hospice can arrange for the patient to be transferred to networking partners for in-patient care. The Hospice offices are in Hope Street, Hermanus.

Q  What is palliative care?

The essence of palliative care is that it is meaningful, planned, purposeful, and focuses on living actively whilst dealing with the effects of illness.    

Palliative care is an approach that aims to improve the quality of life of patients facing problems associated with coping with a life threatening illness. This care is achieved through the prevention and relief of suffering - physical, psychosocial and spiritual - and is provided by an interdisciplinary team of doctors, professional nurses, a social worker, counsellors and trained volunteers.

Q  How many patients do you care for?

From when Overstrand Hospice started operating in January 2007 until the end of January 2017 we have cared for 903 patients and their families and have made 1499 home visits. We now have an average of 139 patients and their families being cared for at any one time. Since the recording of Companion visits was started in 2012, visits to bereaved family members total 2707 and 1131 patients have attended the Day Hospice mornings.

Q  What does it cost to have assistance from Hospice?

All Hospice services are free.

Q  How is Overstrand Hospice  financed?

We are fully self-funding. The current cost to Hospice is approximately R15000 per new patient. Income must come from our Shop and the 600 Club, through bequests, grants from Trust and Corporate funds, donations and local fundraising events such as concerts, bridge drives, street collections, golf days etc.

 Q  How is Overstrand Hospice run?

Overstrand Hospice is a non-profit company with a Board of Directors who are all volunteers. Many of the Board members have relevant business experience. Salaried staff are two palliative care trained Professional Nurses, a Social Worker, the General Manager, an Office Administrator, a 600 Club administrator, a Funding Co-ordinator, the Patient Care Administrator, the Volunteer Co-ordinator, a Shop Manager, two Shop Assistants and a Transport, Logistics and Maintenance officer. Some relief staff are employed when required. All these functions are supported by a committed band of volunteer workers.

Q  What relationship exists between the Hospice and other care organisations in the Overstrand?

We each have our own special niche in the community, but as networking partners we liaise closely to ensure there is no wastage and overlap of resources.