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NZCT Grant supports continuation of excellent quality, palliative care in Specialist Palliative Care Unit (SPCU)

A big thank you to the New Zealand Community Trust (NZCT) for the contribution they make to local communities, and especially the contribution they have made to the community that we care for.

The grant that they have gifted us will go directly towards contributing to the salary of our SPCU Clinical Nurse Leader, Dominica Cresswell. As part of the Clinical Governance Group and team leader, Dominica works to increase the quality, accessibility, and reach of the hospice service. She works closely with the interdisciplinary team to meet patients’ holistic needs. As well as her work in the SPCU, Dominica is back studying this year completing post graduate papers in health management. “My role is to support the registered nurses and healthcare assistants to provide excellent quality, specialist palliative care, and to work alongside the interdisciplinary team which includes our allied health clinical team. Patients and whānau needs are so much more than the physical which is where the holistic care of Hospice is so powerful.” 

Dominica has extensive experience of excellent patient and whānau care including working as a registered nurse in intensive care units in Sydney Australia. After 10 years of doing this work, she returned to New Zealand knowing that she wanted to work in palliative care. 

Dominica first joined Hospice as a volunteer in 2014 before working in the SPCU as a registered nurse, Dominica then went on to work as the hospice palliative liaison to aged residential care. During this time, she also completed her master’s degree in nursing with Massey University, her research provided useful insights into her work today, “It gave me a good understanding of the provision of palliative care in residential aged care in New Zealand. It also showed me that we can develop rapport with someone very quickly and it is important to build those relationships of trust with a patient and their family very early on.” 

Most of what Dominica does today is working with the hospice team but she still loves the interaction with patients, “Without a doubt, it fills me up. I constantly wonder at the strength and dignity people demonstrate at the end of life and we get to see what is important to them; it makes me appreciate my family; I think I hold them that little bit closer.” 

Dominica Cresswell, SPCU Clinical Nurse Leader and Paul Matheson, Funding Advisor New Zealand Community Trust (NZCT)

The SPCU is a place for patients to receive symptom management, respite care, or end of life care when this cannot be managed in the community. Dominica says, “There is a lot of love here from patients, families, whānau, and team, and some precious moments of joy.”

Paul Matheson QSO JP, Funding Advisor New Zealand Community Trust (NZCT) says that NZCT supports several hospices around the country, and this is the second time they have supported the Nelson Tasman Region Trust, with the first being for the building of the Nelson Tasman Hospice Inpatient Unit and HUB in Suffolk Road.  “It is NZCT’s pleasure to support Nelson Tasman Hospice Trust and we are looking forward to building a long-term relationship with the organisation.” 

We acknowledge that it takes a community to make a Hospice happen. Thank you NZCT for being part of a compassionate community and empowering Nelson Tasman Hospice to care for our community. 

Community grants are integral to the sustainability of our Hospice; if you know of any Trusts or Foundations that may consider supporting our essential service work please let us know.

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