Frequently Asked Questions

Palliative care is for anyone of any age (from babies to older adults) who have been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness. Palliative care identifies and treats symptoms and issues associated with the illness, which may be physical, emotional, spiritual or social.

For some people, palliative care may be beneficial right from the time of diagnosis. It can be provided alongside other treatments (for example treatments for cancer such as surgery, chemotherapy and radiation) or when those treatments have ended. Some people access palliative care on and off through various stages of an illness.

Accessing palliative care early can help ensure a person’s values, beliefs and goals for their care are known and respected.

Palliative care offers expert care to relieve a person’s pain and suffering, and to respond to their social, emotional, cultural, and spiritual needs. Support is also available to family and friends providing care.

You can ask for palliative care any time from your diagnosis and throughout your illness. It can help with pain and other symptoms and improve your quality of life at any time during your illness. Palliative care may increase, reduce or stop, as your needs change. It is not limited to the last days or weeks of life, nor is it a service of ‘last resort’.

You can ask your GP or your specialist doctor to refer you to a palliative care service. However in Victoria you can request assistance from a community palliative care service like PHH without a doctor’s referral. You can make a referral via our website.

No. PHH is a company limited by guarantee and is a not-for-profit organisation that was established by the community in 1984 in response to an identified need for home-based palliative care. PHH has a voluntary community-based Board of Directors and receives most of its funding from the Department of Human Services. Additional funding comes from fundraising activities conducted by auxiliaries and from donations from clients’ families and other supporters.

  • By phoning PHH on 5973 2400
  • People may self refer
  • Doctors and/or other health care providers can refer
  • Family and friends can contact PHH with enquiries but PHH will have to obtain the permission of the person before PHH can arrange a visit
  • It is not necessary to obtain a medical referral for an assessment visit to be made however PHH staff must have medical information if ongoing care is required
  • PHH office hours are 9am-5pm Monday to Friday.

All residents within the Mornington Peninsula Shire, City of Frankston and parts of the City of Kingston (south of Mordialloc Creek) who are living at home with a life limiting illness, as well as their families and carers.

Very soon after a referral is received, the person will be contacted by a PHH specialist palliative care nurse who will arrange to visit them at home to discuss their needs and those of their family and carers. If PHH services are required, a Care Plan will be offered and the visiting nurse will arrange the necessary help from PHH staff and volunteers.

All PHH Nursing and Allied Health Services, plus volunteer support, is free of charge. Clients are responsible to pay for their own medications and equipment as required. Government support is also available to access, if eligible.

No. PHH is open to all persons, of any age, gender or cultural background who live within our service area who have a terminal illness (which includes conditions other than cancer).

No. Our clients are cared for in their own homes by our multidisciplinary team and volunteers. However, at times, some clients may require respite care in hospital or at Peninsula Health’s Palliative Care Unit that is located Building 6/125 Golf Links Road in Frankston.

Call our Manager of Volunteers on 5973 2400. There is a formal training period conducted over several weeks and ongoing professional development activities are available.

As a community-based agency, financial support from the community is vital with approximately 25 per cent of PHH funds coming from donations. These can be made online by clicking on the pink DONATE button at the top of the page, directly to PHH by cheque or call PHH on 5973 2400 to use your credit card over the phone. All donations are receipted and are tax deductible.

Donations are used to fund many aspects of client care services including welfare support and clinical programs such as support groups, volunteer programs, travel costs, bereavement groups and sometimes to purchase and/or hire equipment and medication on a special needs basis.