The Nelson Tasman Hospice has provided palliative care services to the community since 1987, only one year after Hospice New Zealand was established. In this time, Nelson Tasman Hospice was based at four different buildings and has always relied on the support of volunteers and donors.
In 1987, the Nelson Tasman Hospice’s at-home service officially began with the help of two staff, a roster of casual nurses, and eight volunteers based out of Sally McCormack House at 96 Waimea Road. The building was named in honour of Nelson resident Sally McCormack whose bequest supported the establishment of the service. Education sessions took place in the lounge with an open plan kitchen, sharing palliative care practices from around the world.
In 1999, as demand for palliative care grew with the growing population of the Nelson Tasman region, Nelson Tasman Hospice moved to 1 Erin Street. This move coincided with the completion of the inpatient unit, a short-stay facility for patients requiring palliative care at the nearby Manuka Street Hospital.
In 2004 Nelson Tasman Hospice moved to 2 Erin Street and in 2006 moved again to a house on Manuka Street. In 2008 the inpatient unit at Manuka Street Hospital also grew its services from four beds to 11 with one room retained as an office. The inpatient unit remained housed at the independently owned and operated Manuka Street Hospital until the hospital’s service grew to the point of requiring the space occupied by Hospice.
In 2015, Nelson Tasman Hospice began the search for land and early planning for a new building. The search ended up with a site for the new facility at 331 Suffolk Road in Stoke. The New Home for Hospice campaign was launched and successfully raised the $14M cost for the new Hospice, thanks to the generous support of the community. The build was led by Gibbons Construction and supported with a wide range of sub-contractors – all from the Nelson Tasman region – many of whom made significant contributions of their own to the project, enabling its completion on time and on budget.
The new facility opened in April 2019 and allows Nelson Tasman Hospice to meet the growing demand for services in the region. The new hospice includes a 10-bed specialised palliative care inpatient unit, including consulting rooms, space for families to meet and spend time together, and allied support services including pastoral care and grief counselling for families and whānau. It also features a training venue, commercial kitchen, and extensive gardens.
Help Nelson Tasman Hospice maintain its services of providing palliative care and family support to the region’s growing population. This can be done by volunteering, donating, or supporting one of four Hospice Shops in the region by donating quality household goods or shopping at the store.