Following a presentation from Andy Werner, a member of the steering committee for the Stratford/Perth Residential Hospice, councillors agreed to offer a letter of support to help the group in its bid to secure funding from the South West Local Health Integration Network.
There was also an invitation to apply for municipal funding.
Werner made a compelling case for the residential hospice, which would provide physical, emotional, social and spiritual care in a home-like setting for local palliative patients.
“Most people, if given the choice, would want to die in their own home,” he said, noting that that’s not always possible.
So most end up at hospitals, which, by nature, are more focused on health recovery than palliative care, said Werner.
A hospice would not only provide meaningful, compassionate end-of-life care, but would also make sense from a financial standpoint, he said, noting that an acute care bed within the Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance costs about $1,141 a day, where a hospice bed costs $515.
The savings could add up to millions of dollars, said Werner.
“Providing the right care in the right place at the right time means acute care beds can be used for acute care,” he said, “freeing up the backlog and reducing wait times in hospital.”
A 10-bed hospice would require a significant capital campaign and sustainability fund, and Werner said community support and partnerships will be critical to making the facility a reality.
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