Freqently asked questions

Palliative care is for people of any age who have a life-limiting illness. It’s when a cure is no longer the aim of medical care. It aims to maintain the best possible quality of life for the person. 

It’s not just for patients. It is also for carers, family members, neighbours and friends who help to care for the patient.

Palliative care is individual and it looks after the physical, emotional, social and spiritual needs. 

Palliative care focuses on quality of life and is care directed by the patient, their carers and family.

When we talk about death, we can talk about people’s fear of death and their personal beliefs. We can help to overcome the fear and plan for death as we would for other big life events. 

When patients, their carers and families work with a Palliative Care service they are helped to talk about and prepare for death. This means everyone is working together so that the person who is dying receives end of life care based on their choices, preferences, dignity and comfort.

Ballarat Hospice Care does not actively participate in Voluntary Assisted Dying.  If a patient chooses voluntary assisted dying; we will continue to offer quality palliative care to them, their carers and families, enabling them to live, die and grieve well.

For Voluntary Assisted Dying information or support, email or call (03) 8559 5823 or 0436 848 344.

Our services and equipment loan are free to the patient.

Funding is provided through the Victorian Department of Health, supplemented by grants and donations.

Gandarra is part of Ballarat Health Services providing a local inpatient specialist palliative care.

Ballarat Hospice Care provides outpatient or home based specialist palliative care to patients who wish to be cared for and die in their own home.

Gandarra and Ballarat Hospice Care both provide specialist palliative care and work closely together to care for patients.

We work closely with other services involved in patient care.

We work with others such as GPs specialists, hospitals and other services such as funeral directors.

It is not unusual for patients to go between inpatient care (Gandarra for example or another hospital setting) and their home to be cared for.

We support and work on behalf of the patient and their carers.

Shannon’s Bridge is a Creswick based charity and volunteer organisation that helps connect patients and existing palliative care services and supports.

Ballarat Hospice Care is a specialist palliative care service that provides personalized, home based palliative care, 24 hour support, equipment loan and education.

One way to ensure that end of life care and choices are understood and respected is to have an Advance Care Plan in place.

An Advance Care Plan helps everyone involved in a person’s care to understand what that person wants or does not want. It takes into consideration the person’s beliefs, values and choices about current and future care.

In the Grampians region the local end of life or palliative care specialist teams work closely together and they are:

  • Ballarat Hospice Care Inc.
  • Central Grampians Palliative Care (East Grampians Health Service)
  • Gandarra Palliative Care (inpatient palliative care provided by Ballarat Health Services)
  • Grampians Regional Palliative Care Team (Ballarat Health Services)
  • Western Health Palliative Care
  • Wimmera Hospice Care (Wimmera Health Care)

Patients and carers being cared for by Ballarat Hospice Care can use an afterhours service late at night, in the early morning, on weekends and Melbourne public holidays. Our nurses will visit patients during the afterhours, on weekends and public holidays where needed.

We encourage patients and carers to ask all their question even if they are difficult to ask.

Questions may be about

  • medicines – using them safely and possible side effects
  • treatment choices – consequences for different treatments
  • death – what does death and dying look like at home?
  • emotions they are feeling such as anger, grief, sadness or guilt
  • legal concerns – wills, power of attorney, funeral arrangements
  • relationships and intimacy.

Our values guide our work

  • Loyalty – we support you, guide you and stay by your side
  • Kindness – a warm smile, a gentle touch, compassion and consideration in everything we do
  • Honesty – our processes are open and transparent
  • Respect – we listen to you, honouring your ideas, choices and feelings
  • Trust – we build relationships that give you confidence in us
  • Skill – we are specialists in our field to ensure our service is expertly managed
  • Willingness – we listen, we care, we anticipate and we plan


Your feedback plays an important role in helping us to improve our service