1. What is residential hospice?
Residential hospice provides support and care for persons at end of life so that they may live as fully and as comfortably as possible. Hospice recognizes that the dying process is a part of the normal process of living and focuses on enhancing the quality of remaining life. Hospice affirms life and neither hastens nor postpones death.

Residential hospice exists in the hope and belief that through appropriate care and the promotion of a caring community sensitive to their needs that individuals and their families may be free to attain a degree of satisfaction in preparation for death.

Hospice offers palliative care for all individuals and their families without regard to age, gender, nationality, race, creed, sexual orientation, disability, diagnosis, or availability of a primary caregiver.

Residential hospice programs provide state-of-the-art palliative care and supportive services to individuals at the end of their lives, their family members and significant others, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, in home-like care settings. Physical, social, spiritual, and emotional care is provided by a clinically-directed interdisciplinary team consisting of patients and their families, professionals and volunteers.

2. Why is hospice care necessary?
At present 80% of Nova Scotians would prefer to die at home but only 20% are able to do so. Often, as a result of pain management concerns, care-giver fatigue or end of life complications, hospital admissions increase significantly in the last few weeks of life. This is extremely expensive for the province as an acute care bed costs approximately $1200.00 per day whereas a hospice bed costs approximately $475.00 per day. More importantly, acute care hospitalizations would often be unnecessary if residential hospice was available to support both the dying and their families and care-givers. We seek to honour this important stage in life and residential hospice allows family to share this precious time without the stresses of managing end-of-life care.

3. Who will hospice serve?
Hospice Halifax will be available to all residents of Halifax and surrounding area at no cost.

4. As a resident, what can I expect in hospice?
You can expect home cooked meals, 24 hour medical support, large rooms to accommodate you and your visitors; space for family members and children to relax. You can also expect that your personal needs and wishes will be our first priority.

5. Who can visit me as a resident?
You may have whomever you choose to visit with you. We will also provide accommodation in your room for one family member or friend to stay overnight if you wish.

6. What type of care will I receive?
You will receive compassionate care that will strive to keep you comfortable and free of pain. You can request spiritual support and will have a group of staff and volunteers to make you your favourite meals, sit with you should you wish and ensure that your needs and wishes are their priority.

7. Where will it be located?
The first hospice in Halifax will be located in the south end of the city, close to hospitals and universities. We will be joining two old houses at 618 and 620 Francklyn St. in order to make a new, state of the art home-like hospice.

8. What will the new hospice look like?
The new hospice will fit well into and even enhance the existing neighbourhood as it will be a large home like building that retains its original architectural heritage while providing a modern, fully equipped hospice residence inside. It will be surrounded in the front by gardens and will feature walk out balconies from every room. It will also be home to a number of family rooms, a kitchen for families and residents and a training and education centre for programs and medical training opportunities.

9. How big will it be?
The Hospice will be just over 10,000 sq. feet. This incorporates two floors, will maintain the existing footprint and will include the space between the two houses.

10. How many beds?
There will be 10 bedrooms with a living area for family in each room. There will also be a learning, program and research centre along with a kitchen, family rooms and administrative offices.

11. How much will the project cost?
The cost to build the hospice will be 4 million dollars

12. When will it be open to clients?
The Hospice is slated to open in 2017.

13. When can the public have a tour?
There will be community tours prior to opening.

14. How is this project being funded?
It is often said that hospice happens “in community, by community and for community”. This means that the capital will be raised through a campaign within the Halifax community. Hospice Halifax will pay for half of the operating budget and the Nova Scotia Health Authority will pay for the remainder. Operational funds will be accessed through donations, events and a soon-to-be-announced social enterprise.

15. How can I support you?
There are many ways you can help. Donations are our biggest priority as we develop the hospice. It is also important that we find community champions for hospice who will attend events, volunteer their time and skills and enthusiastically promote hospice with their networks.

16. What is the impact on the health system?
Hospice provides specialty palliative care service and will therefore free up hospital beds for patients who are likely to recover from an illness. At approximately $475 per day, hospice is a cost effective way to provide services, considering it can cost $1200 per day to die in hospital. In addition, since we will raise half of the operating costs, the cost to government is further reduced to approximately $240 per day, which is nearly $1000 savings per person, per day while providing more services.

17. Who will operate the hospice?
Hospice Halifax will operate the hospice in conjunction with health authority policies and with assistance from palliative care professionals.

18. Who governs hospice?
The organization is managed by a community led volunteer Board of Directors. Health related policy will be developed within current health guidelines with the health authority.

19. What is Hospice Halifax’s connection to AST?
AST is the landlord and owner of the site of the new hospice. While we are a non-sectarian organization we look forward to supporting pastoral care students when and if it is helpful for residents.

20. How much will this cost the resident?
Nothing! Hospice is provided to any resident of Nova Scotia at no charge.