Hospice Worker

A number of different skills at various levels of professionalism are required in a hospice. Doctors, nurses, psychologists, social workers and accountants provide the professional services required.

Hospices also rely heavily on volunteer workers, including lay counsellors, to spend time with patients and their families and help them to come to terms with death.

Volunteer hospice workers are trained to take care of the psychological and physical needs of patients and to reduce their pain and discomfort as much as possible. Hospices operate on a voluntary contribution basis, so they require the services of professional fundraisers to help them raise funds to keep the institution running.

Personal Requirements

  • reliable and responsible
  • compassionate, caring, patient and mature
  • empathetic with terminally-ill patients and their families
  • understanding of the process of grief
  • good communication and listening skills
  • good life-coping skills
  • willing to sacrifice time in community service

How to Enter

Schooling & School Subjects

  • National Senior Certificate meeting degree requirements for a degree course required to become a professional doctor, nurse, psychologist, social worker, administrator or accountant
  • National Senior Certificate meeting diploma requirements for a nursing diploma course Each institution has its own entry requirements.
No specific requirements for volunteer hospice workers

Compulsory Subjects: depend on field of study
Recommended Subjects: depend on field of study

What to Study

Hospices offer in-service training for hospice workers.

For more information refer to the alphabetical list of occupations to find the job descriptions of: Medical Doctor, Nurse, Nursing Auxiliary, Psychologist, Social worker, Accountant and Counsellor



Further Information

The nearest hospice in your area

Getting Started

  • volunteer as an aide or helper at your nearest community centre, hospice or church centre
  • make an appointment to speak to a hospice worker about this type of work

Programmes by Study Institutions

Related Occupations

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