The Dorothy Ley Hospice Palliative Care Centre

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Since The Dorothy Ley Hospice began 11 years ago, we have been monitoring community needs for hospice palliative care. In this way, our services and support have expanded to meet the changing requirements of Etobicoke residents.

Recent years have become more challenging. As health care cutbacks continue and the population ages, the need for in-home hospice support is escalating – along with the need for a freestanding hospice to provide compassionate care for those who cannot be cared for at home.

Just as Dr. Dorothy Ley pioneered the development of hospice palliative care here in Canada, The Dorothy Ley Hospice is pioneering the creation of Toronto’s first freestanding hospice palliative care center for patients with any type of terminal illness.

We will be able to accommodate 10 individuals at a time, or approximately 215 clients a year Ñ a majority of those who are currently forced to leave the Etobicoke community annually to seek palliative care.

The Dorothy Ley Hospice Palliative Care Centre will provide the highest quality of palliative care, which seeks to minimize pain, maximize comfort and ensure that our clients realize their goals for quality of life.

We will offer compassionate care to community residents at no cost to them. This ensures that anyone in need – regardless of financial circumstances – has access to comfort, meaning, dignity and hope. This intimate community facility, targeted to be open by Spring 2004 will be located on the grounds of The Trillium Health Centre, conveniently close to the Queen Elizabeth Way and the 427 highway.

An Intimate Residential SettingAll Dorothy Ley Hospice programs and services will be offered through our Hospice Palliative Care Centre. The most outstanding new element of service to be provided in the Centre will be the residential care program – an advanced clinical care facility. In a home-like setting, terminally ill clients who cannot be looked after at home, yet do not desire hospitalization, will receive exceptional palliative care. This care will be provided – 24 hours a day, seven days a week Ñ by an interdisciplinary team of professionals and volunteers.

Ten private bedrooms will be equipped with comfort beds and specially equipped ensuite bathrooms. All rooms will have phones, televisions, VCRs and Internet access. Pullout bed chairs for family/friends who wish to spend the night will also be provided. Residents will be encouraged to bring personal belongings to furnish their rooms. The rooms will be designed to accommodate all of the unique needs of each of our clients.

An inviting living room will welcome residents and their families and friends with private seating areas arranged around a warm fireplace. Stocked bookcases, a piano, stereo, tropical fish tank and artwork will complement the comfortable surroundings. This will be a heart of this loving home.

The dining room will feature a glass atrium, lots of plants – even a cappuccino bar. There will be several cozy seating areas with tables and chairs, love seats and easy chairs. French doors will lead to an outside patio. While our staff will prepare meals, clients and family members may also prepare refreshments using our facilities.

Our large, central kitchen will be equipped with all amenities where staff, volunteers, residents, family and friends can participate in meal preparation. The space will be able to accommodate several work areas, including a small kitchenette, which will include a table and chairs for intimate family meal preparation and dining.

With a comfortable couch and chairs, a skylight and baffled soundproof walls, clients and their families and friends will have a quiet area for meditation, reflection or prayer. This room will be a place where you can relax and get away from the stresses and challenges of living with a terminal illness

Day respite centreOur centre for day respite will feature a variety of amenities: soundproof therapy room, library/music room, crafts/games area, and access to the central kitchen, hydro tub and garden. Horticultural volunteers will involve residents and others who wish to participate in caring for the abundant greenery inside and outside the Centre.

An open concept, centrally located nursing room will enable Hospice team members to gather and plan for client care and will also be easily accessible to clients and family members.

The healing garden From the living or dining rooms, residents and visitors may enter an outdoor garden, offering fresh air and tranquility. They may sit and enjoy the sunshine – or follow the path to a pond, fountain and meditation area.

The Dorothy Ley Hospice currently relies on more than 260 volunteers to ensure that our clients live with comfort, meaning, dignity and hope. All of our client support volunteers participate in a 30-hour certified training program conducted by a range of experienced professionals who cover all aspects of hospice palliative care. Once accredited, volunteers are carefully matched with clients.

For The Dorothy Ley Hospice Palliative Care Centre, we will expand our volunteer contingent by 60% as well as our volunteer training program, thus enabling us to serve more than 365 clients annually.