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Health Minister Doug Currie holds a news conference in Charlottetown on Tuesday to announce sweeping changes to Prince Edward Island's health care system.
Progress is underway for the construction of a $5.2 million stand-alone palliative care centre on Murchison Lane in Charlottetown, adjacent to the Sherwood Home.
Health and Wellness Minister Doug Currie says the centre will improve the quality of life for patients and allow them to spend their last days as comfortable as possible with every opportunity to enjoy time with their families.
“The centre will ensure patients receive a high quality of care in an environment where they feel comfortable, supported and at ease.”
The concept design for the centre is finalized and tenders for the new building will be issued this fall.
The new facility will incorporate some new services such as a day program, respite services, an outpatient clinic, as well as a 10-bed palliative care unit. Also included in the design is a common room that will serve as a gathering place, kitchen and family room.
Construction will be completed early fall 2014, and patients will move into the building later that fall. At that time, the palliative care unit in the Prince Edward Home will close.
“The construction of this new facility allows for a number of great opportunities,” said Dr. Mirelle Lecours, the provincial palliative care medical consultant.
“For example, the day program will have a component of education for staff as well as patients and families regarding issues pertaining to end-of-life care, pain control and advance-care planning,” said Dr. Lecourts. “The new facility will also provide space for support groups and bereavement services. Investments like this one have resulted in Prince Edward Island developing one of the most comprehensive palliative care programs in Canada.”
She said the centre and its programs will be tailored to meet the needs of patient s and their families. For example, patients may want to stay at the centre during the day but return home with their families during the evening and overnight.
Currie says the centre will meet the needs identified by Islanders and their families, as well as community partners such as the Hospice Palliative Care Association of P.E.I.”
“I also want to acknowledge the incredible Islanders who work in palliative care and who ensure all patients are treated with compassion and dignity. I’m confident this new facility will benefit patients, families and health-care workers.”