Kensington's program addresses the gap in Toronto’s health care system for palliative care in Toronto.
According to a study by the Canadian Institute for Health Information, only 15% of Canadians have early access to palliative care in the community, even though 89% of all Canadians could benefit from it in their last year of life.
To address this growing issue, Kensington’s Second Mile Club offers a Community Day Hospice program, aiming to address a gap in Toronto’s health care system for palliative care delivered in the community. This five-day per week program gives clients the care they need for their physical, emotional, social and spiritual health in the community, while they continue to live in the comfort of their home.
Started as a vision to support the community
“The Community Day Hospice is a program that we hoped to start at Kensington for a very long time and we are excited to see this hope turn into a reality,” says Nadine Persaud, Director of Client Services, Kensington Health.
“The aim of this program is to be present, listen, and provide clients an opportunity to create memories with a support system that feeds their resilience in a vulnerable time in their lives.”
The Community Day Hospice program was pitched by Nadine after years of experience working in hospice care throughout Toronto. She saw the impact this program could have on people by providing a comfortable space for clients and caregivers to support their needs while coping with illness so that they can continue to live at home.
“I supported a young man who was living with advanced brain cancer. He often explained the Day Hospice program as being his oasis that changed his life,” says Nadine.
Feeling alone and vulnerable at a time of great uncertainty, the program helped him find meaning during a very difficult time. The Community Day Hospice program launched in August and is growing.
“We are filling a gap in community care by creating a safe space where individuals can make meaningful moments throughout their journey.” Nadine envisions this program evolving to eventually support clients’ physical needs in addition to psychosocial support, which will create a truly holistic model.
The Day Hospice program care team is primarily dependent on volunteer support, guided by Kensington employees. The care team will be responsible for creating an individualistic experience for clients through mindfulness sessions, psychosocial support, and caregiver support.