The facility's purpose is to meet the needs of terminally ill patients and their families.
By WILLIAM K. ALCORN
VINDICATOR STAFF WRITER
POLAND -- Hospice of the Valley is having an open house Sunday to celebrate completion of Hospice House, the area's first inpatient hospice care center.
The open house at the $7 million facility at 9803 Sharrott Road, located on the grounds of the Assumption Village, begins with a blessing and dedication at 1 p.m. Tours and refreshments follow until 4 p.m.
Hospice House, located on 14 wooded acres with streams and wildlife, has 16 patient rooms on the lower level with garden views. There also is a family kitchen, a nondenominational chapel, bereavement center, family lounges, community gardens, walking paths and children's play area, said Liz McGarry, director of development.
"It looks like a big bed and breakfast. It doesn't look medical," she said.
McGarry said Hospice House, which begins accepting patients by the end of the month, was paid for with donations and pledges and about $700,000 in public money obtained by U.S. Sen. Michael DeWine, R, and U.S. Rep. Ted Strickland of Lisbon, D-6th. She said anyone who still wants to donate to the facility can contact her at (330) 788-1992.
Hospice House is designed to meet the specific needs of the terminally ill and their families. Specific needs can include 24-hour care by trained hospice nurses, McGarry added.
Feasibility studies, marketing research and financial projections demonstrated that the area was in need of such a center. Hospice care normally occurs at home or in a long-term care facility such as a nursing home. And until now, families had to leave the area for an hospice inpatient facility, McGarry continued.
"Our center will provide a more cost-effective level of care and an alternative to those at the end of life," she said.
Hospice of the Valley, now affiliated with Humility of Mary Health Partners, began in 1979 as Hospice of Youngstown serving a 25-mile radius around Youngstown. In 1992, it broadened its service area to include Columbiana, Mahoning and Trumbull counties in Ohio and parts of western Pennsylvania.
Hospice of the Valley employs about 100 nurses, home health aides, social workers, chaplains and administrators. The opening of Hospice House will create about 30 new jobs. Hospice of the Valley also has about 200 companion, office and special events volunteers.
Besides the new Hospice House, Hospice of the Valley has offices in Mahoning County at 5190 Market St., Boardman; Columbiana County, 120 W. County Line Road, 1120 Village Plaza, Columbiana; Trumbull County, 1296 Tod Place N.W., Suite 202, Warren; and its community bereavement center at 3736 Boardman-Canfield Road, Canfield.