About the Hospice
The Wisdom Hospice is the only Adult Hospice for the areas of Medway and Swale. The specialist palliative care service, provided by Medway Community Healthcare and partially funded by The Friends, offers a multi-disciplinary approach; providing care at Home, on the Ward or in Hospital.
The Hospice's aim is to help improve the quality of life for patients and their families at any stage of the patient's illness. They support those with a terminal diagnosis or who's illness has become life-limiting. The majority of patients seen by the service have advanced cancer, but they support many with neurological diseases such as motor neurone disease, those with advanced HIV disease and advancing respiratory, cardiac and renal disease.
The Hospice itself includes fifteen in-patient beds, bereavement support and advice as well as psychosocial and family support to patients and their families. They provide palliative care in the comfort of your home, as well as advice and support through our Wellbeing and Therapy centre. This includes respite care and complementary therapies which supported by a Hairdressing Salon, private therapy spaces and Art Room. All Hospice services are free of charge.
Referral into the service can be made by any healthcare professional and for patients, at home, it is with the agreement of their GP.
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More information about some of our services can be found in the leaflets below
Care for you and your loved ones
Care in your home
The Community Palliative Care Team consists of specialist nurses, physiotherapists and a paramedic based at The Wisdom Hospice. They offer patients, families and carers help with symptoms and problems associated with their illness. They also discuss advance care planning and wishes for the future.
When you are referred to them, they will call you to arrange a clinic appointment or if you are housebound, a home visit. During your first appointment, they will find out your goals and what is important to you. They will review your medications, discuss any symptoms you may be having, talk to your family, friends and carers if they're around, and make a plan for your care with you. They will also help coordinate all other services involved in your care by talking to your doctor, district nurses, and other professionals who look after you.
Depending on your needs and wishes, they can offer a range of additional support in your home such as equipment and rehabilitation to keep you mobile and assist you at home, as well as emotional support and counselling for you and/or your family and friends, or practical advice on money, benefits, or legal issues.
Care in our ward
The Wisdom Hospice Inpatient Unit has 15 beds, consisting of 3 side rooms and 3 bays of 4 beds. Many people who are admitted to the Unit will return home after a period of medical, nursing and therapeutic input. Other people on the unit are very unwell and have chosen to spend the last few days of their life at the Wisdom Hospice.
Medway Community Healthcare help our patients by providing the highest quality specialist palliative care, through
- Symptom control - Helping patients manage the symptoms of their illness such as sickness, breathlessness, weight loss, anxiety and pain through adjusting medications and trying other interventions.
- Rehabilitation - Helping patients overcome their limitations in order to move, communicate and live more freely with some quality.
- End of Life - Caring for patients who are at the end of their life.
During your stay, you and your family and friends will get to know our team of professionals and volunteers who can assist with a variety of needs from practical, emotional or just a friendly chat. This may include nurses, doctors, physiotherapists, occupational therapists or members of our Family Carers Support Team.
Care in hospital
The Hospital Palliative Care Team are specialist nurses based in Medway Maritime Hospital who are employed by The Wisdom Hospice, Rochester and are a part of Medway Community Healthcare Community. They have specialist training and experience in controlling symptoms and offering support for patients with serious, life-limiting illnesses. They also provide emotional/psychological support for patients and their carers within the hospital setting. Their aim is to help improve the quality of life for patients and their carers during their hospital admission and when appropriate, support with discharge from hospital.
Palliative care can be provided for any patient who has a serious condition, at any stage of their illness and patients who are undergoing investigations and do not yet have a diagnosis can sometimes benefit from our help. We also provide support for patients at the end of their lives and may die within hours to days.
We work closely with the medical and nursing staff to support patients and their families but do not take over their care, therefore, remaining under their admitting Consultant.
Medway Community Healthcare
The hospice is run by Medway Community Healthcare (MCH) who provide a wide range of high quality community health services on behalf of the NHS. Find out more on their website:
Supportive Care at the Wellbeing and Therapy Centre
The Wisdom wellbeing and therapy centre provides a wide and varied range of supportive and therapeutic activities for patients with a palliative diagnosis and also for their families.
The therapeutic activities include:
- Fitness for fun
- Art and Craft for Wellbeing
- Breathlessness management group
- Relaxation and reminiscence
- Information sessions
- Patient and carer groups
- Carer groups
- Fellowship, emotional support and access to others in a similar situation
- Referral to the multidisciplinary team
- Access to complementary therapies
- Pamper afternoons
The centre offers an 8 week, goal oriented programme for patients with a palliative diagnosis, with signposting to other community services. Referral can be made by any health professional involved in the patients care directly to the Wisdom Hospice.
The free Pamper Afternoons offers patients complimentary therapies, including manicures, facials, massage and having their hair done. Afterwards they enjoy a Pimms Afternoon Tea.
Symptom Control and Care Palliative Care Guidelines
For healthcare professionals involved in the care of patients with incurable, progressive disease who are experiencing unpleasant symptoms