The Province of B.C. recently granted $40

The Province of B.C. recently granted $40

Hospice Day Program gets underway

Day hospice established at Green Home in Cranbrook

Barry Coulter

The Cranbrook Kimberley Hospice Society continues to evolve in the services it offers, and a new program is getting off the ground, thanks to a $40,000 boost from the Government of B.C.

Hospice is a registered non-profit organization that provides comfort to individuals with terminal illness and support to their loved ones. All services provided by Cranbrook Kimberley Hospice Society are free of charge.

The BC Centre for Palliative Care distributed $40,000 to the Cranbrook Kimberley Hospice Society to increase access to its Live and Learn Day Hospice at F.W. Green Memorial Home in Cranbrook.

Day hospice is a place for people with life-limiting illness to access hospice services and supports, such as help managing symptoms, talking about concerns and planning for future care. People also have the opportunity to share experiences with those in similar situations.

Hospice Board Member Don Davidson explained it as for those “on the start of their long journey.”

The $40,000 was to help set this program up, Davidson said. “We’ve kitted out one of the apartments at the Green Home to do this program and we’ve put money into making it homey so that folks have a place to come to.”

Hospice will operate a 12-week program out of this space, where clients come in once a week for four or five hours, Davidson said. “We run them through some peer support — just chatting with each other, because they’re all in the same boat.

“We have various programs, offering them different modalities of care — like self care, comfort care — and we deal with advance care planning and journalling, and stuff like that to help them prepare along their way.”

Kootenay East MLA Bill Bennett said palliative services are an important part of B.C.’s health-care system. “This $40,000 plus $18,000 from Community Gaming Grants will increase access to day-hospice services in Cranbrook meaning additional supports for both patients and their loved ones at a very difficult time,” Bennett said in a government press release.

The Ministry of Health and health authorities collaborated with the BC Centre for Palliative Care to determine how the funds would be allocated by studying B.C.’s palliative population data to assess characteristics such as age, underlying cause of death and geography. Current bed-to-population ratios and home-based palliative services were also looked at, as well as projections of future demand.

“Those nearing end of life and their loved ones deserve timely, well-co-ordinated, compassionate care as close to home as possible,” said Interior Health board chair John O’Fee. “Our strategy includes specialized education for staff; dedicated resources in the form of a medical director and newly created nurse specialist roles; and the introduction of designated palliative beds, including those announced here.”

The BC Centre for Palliative Care was established in 2013 by the Institute for Health System Transformation and Sustainability to support palliative and end-of-life care practices based on evidence, education and innovation to improve and support care for those living with and dying from serious illness and their families.

For more information on the Cranbrook Kimberley Hospice Society and the services it provides, go to ckhospice.com.