Dargaville Hospice and Dargaville Hospital management and staff gather in the Kowhai Room, now undergoing the biggest remodelling and upgrade it has ever seen

Major upgrade for hospice care

by Andy Bryenton

Dargaville Hospice’s Kowhai Room, a dedicated unit situated within Dargaville Hospital, is currently receiving the most significant upgrade in its 27-year history.

The Kowhai Room allows the families and loved ones of hospice patients to gather around them and maintain the bonds of family in a time of need. It was established in March of 1993 thanks to a generous donation from the hospital’s chapel committee. The kowhai was used symbolically — as it is an icon of the New Zealand Hospice Society. Now, says hospice’s Annette Olsen, the room will be better suited to the needs of both patients and their relatives.

“The refurbishment will involve moving the kitchenette and dining area out of the Kowhai Room, into the next-door lounge, with a door directly connecting them. The idea is to provide a separate space for family and friends to have a cuppa and a talk, allowing a bit of time out.”

It will also increase internal space, allowing for close family members to stay overnight.

There are also plans for a possible outdoor area, making better use of the lawn and deck already adjoining the Kowhai Room.

As a joint effort between the Dargaville Hospice, with funding flowing through from their affiliated Hospice Shop, and the Dargaville Hospital and DHB,— there are many people to thank. Annette, along with the hospice team, and the hospital’s management and nursing staff, wishes to thank all the supporters and volunteers who have made this major upgrade possible.

It will increase the level of care and the scope of possible family engagement for patients who need it.