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The society says the centre provides specialized care for people living with cancer and other serious illnesses, as well as those mourning a sudden death — services it claims the health authority is not prepared to offer.
Fraser Health says hospice patients may decide to transfer to a facility of their choice now or wait until closer to Feb. 24.
That’s when the service agreement with the hospice society is set to end, and Fraser Health said last month it would serve the society with 30 days’ notice to vacate the property the following day.
“Though it is unfortunate the Delta Hospice Society is unwilling to agree to a seamless transition to continue to provide hospice services, they have agreed to vacate the Irene Thomas Hospice,” the health authority says in a statement posted Saturday.
Fraser Health says it intends to continue providing beds at the Irene Thomas Hospice in the future and it will pause plans to open hospice beds at Mountain View Manor, a nearby long-term care home.
“The comfort and well-being of our hospice patients and their families remains our priority, and we want to ensure hospice beds remain available in the Delta community.”
Fraser Health says it provided the required 365 days’ notice to end its service agreement with the hospice society, which refused to comply with a provincial policy requiring hospices to provide assisted death.
The agreement included $1.5 million in annual funding covering most of the costs to operate the hospice on health authority-owned land.