KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Saint Luke’s patients facing an end-of-life journey will have the option to stay in Saint Luke’s continuum of care in their final days when Saint Luke’s new hospice facility opens in summer 2013.
Demolition has begun on existing property on the west side of Southwest Trafficway between 35th and 37th Streets in Kansas City, Mo. The site housed the former Cresthaven Nursing Home and has been vacant for more than 20 years.
The new $7-million, free-standing hospice facility will include 12 individual and two family suites with room to expand. Nestled among trees and green space on two acres, the 25,000-square foot, facility will include a full-service kitchen, a dining area and guest showers for families and visitors, indoor and outdoor chapels, common living rooms, community education room, children’s play and therapy space, on-site pharmacy, and patios for family use are also part of the project.
Matrix Architects will design the project. J.E. Dunn Construction Company is the general contractor. The building will also be green in design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions, meeting all prerequisites to achieve LEED certification through the U.S. Green Building Council.
The Hospice House will be the only freestanding hospice facility situated in the heart of Kansas City and the only one south of the river and north of I-435.
Since 1975, Saint Luke’s Hospice has provided compassionate and dignified care to Kansas City-area patients and their families as a division of Saint Luke’s Health System Home Care Services. It was one of the country’s first hospice programs and currently serves patients in all or parts of 26 counties.
While in-home care will remain an important service of Saint Luke’s Hospice, not all patients at the end of life can be cared for adequately at home. Many patients require inpatient hospice care, and currently more than 200 patients a year are transferred outside Saint Luke’s Health System to the area’s other inpatient programs.
“This loss has a profound impact on the continuum of care as patients and their families have developed long-term relationship with Saint Luke’s doctors and staff,” said Saint Luke’s Hospice and Saint Luke’s Health System board member Chris Perryman, M.D. “The new hospice house will give Saint Luke’s patients a place where their pain and symptoms can be managed medically, emotionally, and spiritually in a homelike setting. Family and friends will be able to continue to provide their love and support and leave care giving to us.”
A fundraising campaign for Saint Luke’s Hospice was led by chairs Larry McMullen and Tom Beal and honorary chairs Jeannette Nichols and Bishop Barry and Mary Howe. The campaign raised $3.5 million in philanthropic donations.