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Published Tuesday 12 Jun 2018

Made by community volunteers, compassion hearts serve a few important purposes.

These lovingly home-made hearts are being used around our Medical Ward and other areas of the hospital to signal when a patient is receiving palliative care at the end of life.

The hearts have been gifted to Hutt Hospital by craft group The Karori Ladies who make them out of plaster of Paris and paper serviettes.

They are displayed outside a room to symbolise the important care that is being delivered behind the door, and to reflect that compassion is at the core of the way palliative care is delivered.

Lead Palliative Care Nurse, Jude Pickthorne, says the hearts are not only symbolic, but they also serve to signal to other ward staff what is happening behind the door.

“Whanau can choose which heart they would like to put on display,” she says. “They’re also welcome to take them home after the person has died if they wish.”