The Province announced over $1 million in funding to support three Hospice Societies in the lower mainland. The funding will provide 10 new beds across facilities in Squamish, Powell River and Sechelt. However, the Societies will need to come up with the funding to operate the beds. The Ministry of Health says more funding announcements are coming. It released the following statement:
The Province and BC Centre for Palliative Care are supporting communities in meeting their palliative and hospice needs. This includes looking at what may be needed in the northern B.C., and we expect to have more to say about that in the very near future….Future funding and support will be allocated based on population data to determine characteristics such as age, underlying cause of death and geography. In addition, current and projected demand will be considered, as well as the need for public education about advance care planning and palliative care supports and recruiting and training volunteers.
The Prince George Hospice Society is always in need of money, but isn’t banking on seeing any funds. “I would be thrilled to get money,” says the Executive Director of the Prince George Hospice Society, Donna Flood. “I am not optimistic we will get the money because there is such a need elsewhere.”
The Prince George Hospice Society is celebrating 30 years of service in the community. It recently received runner-up for the 2017 “Coping with End of Life” award.
The Society has to raise over $1 million from the community each year.”Back in 2009, about 66% of our funding came from Northern Health. Right now we are at about 42% funded,” says Flood. “Everyone is aware of the Dream Home Lottery. What they need to know is that is only 16% of those costs. We have a resale cost which supports another 7%, but well over $600,000 is funded from the events you see held for us.”
With an aging population, the Hospice will need to expand its care. “One of the plans we have in place, but we are not funded, is we need to support Caregivers in their home. It’s not unusual that I will get guests arriving here and I can’t tell who’s the guest and who is the Caregiver. Caregiver burnout is huge.”
Another need is beds. “An ideal number would be 12. We are currently at 10. That makes it quite a stretch for our resources to support that.”