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Hospice Southland provides specialist palliative care to those with a life-limiting illness in Southland 

and the Wakatipu Basin, free of charge 24/7 and ideally in their setting of choice. 

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Latest news and events

The Queenstown Community Hospice extends heartfelt gratitude to the Hugo Foundation for their generous donation of a vehicle, an invaluable asset enabling us to expand our essential care and support services to individuals and whānau facing life-limiting illnesses in our community.

With this support, we are unwavering in our commitment to providing ongoing care that promotes quality of life, ensuring that no one faces their journey alone.

Leveraging the dedicated expertise of our healthcare professional team, our palliative care services not only assist people in living their best lives despite life-limiting illnesses but also provide crucial support during those special moments at the end of life.

We sincerely appreciate the Hugo Foundation's backing in supporting the work we are doing out in the community.

Suzuki Swift - Queenstown


From the CEO

7 March 2023

Challenging times aheadFlora Gilkison - June 2022 photo

Many of you will have heard rumblings about how poorly run our New Zealand health service is – that’s a big picture and I suspect there is a lot of mismanagement and cost overruns in various parts of the monolithic structure. Overall, it gives very good service with some darned hard-working staff who give their all.

Hospice Southland gets about 42% of its funding from the government and quite frankly it’s not enough. But through you, our generous community, we manage to keep our heads above water. Next year may be different as the whole hospice sector struggles to make ends meet and yet keep the wonderful service we provide for patients with an end-of-life diagnosis and support for their families. Extra government funding will be needed.

I’ve been doing some quantitative reviews about how many people do we have in our region and how many of those who die have hospice care and how many don’t, either because they choose not to, don’t require it, or are hidden from us and we don’t offer it them.

Our numbers are interesting. The total population we serve is 140,940 and that comes from 59,335 in Invercargill, 13,270 in Gore, 34,440 in Queenstown and 33,895 in the Southland rural region. Around 890 people die a year and last year we gave clinical, emotional and spiritual care to 330 of these. Most had cancer, but about 100 did not. They died from lung and chest disease or a variety of other conditions. Our patients’ health issues are becoming more complex.

This is where the qualitative reviews come in. Surveys from patients, their family members and other health professionals tell us how well we are doing. Usually, it is very positive, but it’s a complex health environment.

Our population is expected to grow over the next 15 years. While Gore and Southland will stay much the same with very modest growth rates predicted, the interesting one is Queenstown Lakes District – that’s Queenstown, Wanaka and Hawea – which is expected to challenge Invercargill for top population position by about 2038.

One of the things we consider at board governance level is whether our current hospice will be fit for purpose in future. What will need to change? We are already planning on a bigger place in Queenstown.  

All these future questions need to be considered while continuing to provide the best possible care for our patients, their families and whānau and keep a supportive happy environment for our staff and volunteers. Really, I keep saying this but without our strong volunteer team we could not do half of what we need to.

The future will be challenging but I’m sure together we will manage it.

- Flora Gilkison 



COVID update

After reviewing current health guidelines, Hospice Southland management has dropped the signing-in and temperature check requirements for visitors to the IPU and the office, but we ask that people stay at home if sick and do not visit if possible. 

Masks and hand sanitiser are available at Hospice Southland for visiters use.

The times that family and friends can visit patients has reverted to the pre-pandemic hours of operation. 

All our hospice shops are open and customers do not need to wear a mask.

This will be updated as necessary. 

Our Vision

Everyone living in Southland and the Wakatipu Basin has access to the highest quality palliative care.

Value Statements

Patients and families are the focus of the individualised palliative care and services we provide. We respect life and people’s quality of life.