News Local

Marianhill hospice beds get $261,600 in funding

By Stephen Uhler, The Daily Observer

John Fraser, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, and an Ottawa area MPP, paid a visit to Marianhill Monday to deliver the news in person before a crowd of local VIPs, residents, case workers, employees and others that Marianhill's three hospice beds would get annual funding of $261,600..

John Fraser, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, and an Ottawa area MPP, paid a visit to Marianhill Monday to deliver the news in person before a crowd of local VIPs, residents, case workers, employees and others that Marianhill's three hospice beds would get annual funding of $261,600..

The Ontario government has committed to support three hospice beds at Marianhill.

 

The $261,600 annual commitment will ensure the beds will remain operational, ensuring approximately 26 patients and their families each year will have access to high quality, end-of-life care.

This investment will provide compassionate end-of-life support that relieves suffering and improves the quality of living and dying. It is part of Ontario’s commitment to increase access to palliative care across the province, including adding up to 20 new hospices across Ontario.

On Monday, John Fraser, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, and an Ottawa area MPP, paid a visit to Marianhill to deliver the news in person before a crowd of local VIPs, residents, case workers, employees and others.

“We all know it's important,” he said, “to provide people with the care to live well until the end.”

Fraser said dying at home is what people want to do, but it doesn't always work out. He said this is where hospice care comes in, allowing people to live well right up until the end.

"I believe it is our role as a community to help those who need it most,” he said. “Facilities with hospice care are special places that provide compassionate care to patients and families at a challenging time in their lives. They are a critical part of Ontario's plan to ensure access to high quality hospice palliative care."

Linda M. Tracey, Marianhill's Chief Executive Officer, said they have had these beds for the past 20 years or so, but lacked a regular source of funding for them. Now, with this announcement, they do have that funding.

“Marianhill is known for providing high quality compassionate palliative care,” she said. “This funding ensures that together with our community partners, we can continue to provide care for patients and family members at a challenging time in their lives.”

In 2016, Ontario announced an additional investment of $75 million in hospice and palliative care over the following three years. This is on top of the $80 million already invested in hospice and palliative care, bringing the total investment to $155 million.

Renfrew-Nipissing-Pembroke MPP John Yakabuski said he has talked to a lot of people over the years whose families have used the services of hospices and palliative care, and how thankful they are to be able to access this sort of kind, compassionate care in the final stages of their lives.

“To have that option of spending those final days in loving, compassionate care is priceless,” he said. “This is great news for families here in the Ottawa Valley.”

Warden Jennifer Murphy said she applauds this announcement, and wished her family had access to such resources when her mother died at home in Toronto. She said those last days were extremely difficult both for her mother and her family, none of whom had any support whatsoever during the ordeal.

The experience scarred her emotionally, and Murphy said she wished things had been different. With this funding, she said county families will have the support and services they need so they won't have to go through what she and her family did.

SUhler@postmedia.com