Glenn A. Kiser Hospice House open to the public Sunday | Health
SALISBURY - They're calling the realization of a dream thirty years in the making. A new hospice house is set to open soon in Salisbury. It's designed to create comfort for people in the last stages of life, and to provide for their families as well.
"It's hard to describe how I feel right now," said Director Edwina Ritchie. "I feel a sense of pride for everything that we have worked as a team to put together."
Ritchie is excited to see this day come. Medical professionals and service providers are touring the house for the first time and learning about the mission of hospice.
"The philosophy of hospice is to be in your home surrounded by your family and friends and things that are familiar," said Ann Gauthreaux of Rowan Hospice and Pallative Care. "But from time to time there is a need for more around the clock intensive care."
"We have 14 private patient rooms, we care for patients wherever they call home, whether it's in their home, in an extended care facility or here in the hospice house," Ritchie added.
The new hospice house is located on Statesville Boulevard.
It's built to care for those patients, but also to provide relief and rest for family members.
"We can care for patients here," Ritchie said. "We provide excellent care so that their family, their caregivers can get the rest they need."
Rooms are bright and comfortable, there are family rooms, and other amenities. Staff members are specially trained to work here.
"We have selected staff specifically and trained them for this particular project. The staff has folks from this community that we are very proud to have taking care of our patients," said Dari Caldwell, President of Rowan Regional Medical Center. The house is a partnership with Rowan Regional and Rowan Hospice and Pallative Care.
One of the things organizers hope to accomplish with this hospice house is to put a face on hospice care in this area. They say there are a lot of folks who would qualify and benefit from such care, but they simply don't know about it.
"We think that people just don't understand the benefits of hospice or understand that it is a pre paid benefit that people are entitled to," Gauthereaux added.
It has taken 30 years of dreaming, planning, and money raising to make this a reality. The money, more than $6 million, has been raised through a capital campaign. The home is part of Rowan Hospice and Pallative Care and Rowan Regional Medical Center.
The public is invited to a community-wide grand opening celebration Sunday of the Glenn A. Kiser Hospice House. Anyone is interested is welcome to drop by, meet the staff and take a tour of the facility. Refreshments will be served. Parking with shuttle service will be available at Milford Hills Baptist Church.