Hospice Halifax, NSHA sign agreement to help fund, manage hospice project

HALIFAX, NS — The Hospice Society of Greater Halifax and Nova Scotia Health Authority have signed a Memorandum of Agreement to collaborate on the establishment of a 10-bed residential hospice in Halifax.

The goal is to open the hospice in December 2017. Hospice Halifax will raise the capital and manage the development of the structure on Francklyn Street in South End Halifax. NSHA will fund 50 per cent of operations and lead a hospice working group to develop standards that guide space design, care, referral and admission processes.

"Residential hospice is recognized around the world as an important option for of end of life care. This funding for residential hospice will create an affordable and homelike option at end of life for those who are not able to die at home,” said Wendy Fraser, CEO of Hospice Halifax. "There are more than 65 residential hospices across Canada with many more in development. We are thrilled that residential hospice will soon be an option for Nova Scotians as well.”

The agreement helps further the vision of the provincial palliative care strategy launched in 2014.
“At the end of life, everyone deserves integrated, culturally competent palliative care in the setting of their choice,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “This new facility will make hospice care an option for people in the Halifax area.”

Adding this new capacity is also part of the plan to relocate services from the aging Centennial Building at the VG site of the QEII Health Sciences Centre. This creates an opportunity to review the model of support for those requiring palliative care at the QEII Health Sciences Centre.

“Nova Scotians have a range of needs at the end of life. Most say they would like to die at home. Some require acute hospital care, while others could benefit from a residential hospice care whether in a standalone hospice, in a nursing home or other community setting,” said Tricia Cochrane, NSHA’s Vice-President, Integrated Health Services Program, Primary Health Care and Population Health. “For this part of the province, a residential hospice like the one the Hospice Society of Greater Halifax is planning will add a significant resource and appropriately address a need.”

Hospice Halifax entered a 99-year land lease with the Atlantic School of Theology on April 1, 2016. Current plans propose renovating and joining the two residences on the property (618 and 620 Francklyn St.) to create one 12,750-square foot, 10-bed residential hospice. Hospice Halifax will launch a capital campaign in the near future to raise the $6 million dollars required for the renovation and development of the hospice residence.

NSHA continues to work to enhance a full range of palliative services based on evidence and the needs of communities around the province.

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Media Contact:
Everton McLean, Media Relations NSHA, 1-844-483-3344 ext 1.