Room enhancements are well underway for Hospice at Trillium Lodge. A new five-bed community hospice space will provide care and support to individuals nearing the end of their lives and their loved ones.
“The addition of these new beds reflects government’s commitment to double the number of hospice spaces in communities across the province by 2020,” said Health Minister Terry Lake. “More importantly, it will provide compassionate care close to home for families and their loved ones.”
Located in the Eastwood East wing at Trillium Lodge residential care facility in Parksville, the space will provide patients and their families with clinical supports and care through to the end of life.
The unit will include a private entrance and patio, offering patients and their families their own room and private bathroom. A dedicated and specially trained care team of nurses and personal care workers from Island Health will provide clinical care, along with a team of Oceanside Hospice Society staff and volunteers.
“Creating more hospice beds in Oceanside has been a priority and it fills my heart to know individual patients and their families will now receive more support through the difficult days and months at the end of life,” said Parksville-Qualicum MLA Michelle Stilwell.
“I’m grateful for all the partnerships that came together for the benefit of our community as a whole.”
The service model for the hospice space is a joint effort of the local Hospice Bed Steering Committee. The group includes representatives from Island Health, Oceanside Hospice Society, the Federation of Oceanside Residents’ Associations, the Oceanside Division of Family Practice, the Intertribal Health Authority and the Patient Voices Network.
“Our patients at end of life have specific needs, and this care model allows us to care for them and their families in an empathetic, respectful way,” said Lois Cosgrave, Island Health’s director of End of Life Care. “We appreciate the support and the hard work of the committee members.”
Ian Mackay, chair of Oceanside Hospice Society, welcomes their staff and volunteers in the development and provision of service at the new hospice unit.
“Our hospice society has, over the past 25 years, offered an outreach model of psychosocial supports to the community, in tandem with the clinical team,” said McKay. “Hospice at Trillium Lodge will be one more option in the continuum of care. For more information about how to get involved with the new hospice at Trillium Lodge or for information on services offered through Oceanside Hospice Society, visit the society website at www.oceansidehospice.com.”
Maggie Schulz, who represents the Patient Voices Network on the steering committee, said Hospice at Trillium Lodge will be of tremendous benefit to local families navigating the end-of-life journey.
“It’s our most vulnerable time, when we are dying or when somebody we love is dying,” said Schulz. “Hospice cares for the patient and for the patient’s loved ones. To be able to support our community in this way is amazing. It is so important to be able to offer the full continuum of hospice care for the Oceanside community within the community through the addition of a dedicated hospice unit.”
The Nanaimo and District Hospital Foundation is co-ordinating fundraising efforts for the hospice unit at Trillium Lodge and is working with the steering committee partners and individual community donors. “The Hospital Foundation is motivated to support the new end-of-life beds at Trillium Lodge because of the meaningful impact they will have on individuals living in Oceanside communities,” said Jim Crist, hospital foundation chair.
“Our donors often tell us how palliative care has made the difference to their loved one during their last days, and to the family left behind,” said Crist.
Hospice at Trillium Lodge is part of Island Health’s commitment to the provincial doubling of hospice spaces by 2020. Beds on Vancouver Island will increase from 32 to 64.
Island Health’s end-of-life care plan is a long-term vision that will be put in place as resources and competing priorities allow.
— Submitted by Island Health