Territory Palliative Care – Top End Service Royal Darwin Hospital

Territory Palliative Care – Top End (TPC) consists of dedicated and caring staff. We are fortunate to have both a community palliative care team as well as a modern 12 bed hospice.

Our clients and patients are very diverse in that our service includes urban, regional and remote areas; geographically we cover the whole of the top end of the Northern Territory.

Although most of our clients would have a diagnosis of a variety of cancers, we also have those with other end-stage conditions, such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, end-stage renal disease, motor neurone disease and Micardo Joseph Disease.

We have a service that is mostly able to respond to a person’s need in a relatively short time frame and we are not restricted by waiting lists. TPC has a multidisciplinary team that has a wide range of skills and expertise.

Some of the difficulties that the service encounters may seem insurmountable at times, but when the team has the patient’s wishes as a priority, somehow, amazing things happen. TPC has a patient transport vehicle that we are able to, and do, take our patients home even if they live 500kms or more away.

Caring for a large number of Indigenous patients we find that we regularly have the request for them to go ‘home to country’ to die, the staff are dedicated to making these requests a reality and when it happens everyone has a sense of completion of a job well done.

Palliative care is an approach many health care practitioners are able to implement with their patients who have a life-limiting illness. However, for those patients who are a little more complicated and/or difficult to manage, our palliative care team are always available to help out.

Contributed by Jo Watts, Acting Clinical Nurse Manager.

For more information, please visit https://pallcarent.org.au/tpc-top-end/