News | August 21, 2019

Southern California Hospice Foundation Introduces The Heavenly Home

New Residence to Provide Compassionate End-of-Life Housing to Terminally Ill Patients

Costa Mesa, CA (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) - Southern California Hospice Foundation (SCHF), established in 2002 to promote awareness of palliative care options for the terminally ill, and to enhance the quality of life during their final days, is proud to announce the launch of The Heavenly Home. With a planned opening in 2021, the Heavenly Home is the first-of-its-kind residential, end-of-life care home in Orange County, providing physical and spiritual support in a home-like setting.

For many terminally ill patients, dying at home is not an option—a 2018 Stanford University School of Medicine study confirmed that about 80 percent of Americans would prefer to die at home, and yet only about 20 percent do. Though Medicare, MediCal, and many private health insurers cover most medical hospice costs, they do not pay for round-the-clock caregivers or housing. Assisted living facilities or board and care homes will typically only allow hospice care to be provided to patients who were residents before their terminal diagnosis, and usually require a significant out-of-pocket expense. Even those with the financial capacity to remain at home may not have an adequate living situation with family or friends who can care for them in their final days.

“We are launching the Heavenly Home in response to the needs of our community. SoCal Hospice Foundation is committed to serving the needs of terminally ill patients in and around Orange County. Each year we receive frequent requests to help families place loved ones in a residence where hospice can be provided during their final weeks of life,” says Michelle Wulfestieg, Executive Director of Southern California Hospice Foundation. “Unfortunately, only three nonprofit end-of-life care homes currently exist in the state of California. The Heavenly Home will be the fourth in the state, and the first in Orange County. Our goal is to eventually launch this type of home across Southern California and, ultimately, throughout the U.S.”

The six-bedroom Heavenly Home, situated in Mission Viejo, will be staffed with full-time caregivers to ensure that patients receive everything they need to provide for their minds and bodies—from housekeeping services and coordination with medical hospice to arts and music programs, massage treatments, and grooming. The intent is to provide each patient the opportunity to complete their lives in an environment designed to encourage reflection, time spent making lasting memories, and meaningful moments with loved ones.

SCHF serves as the national model to improve access to hospice care, empowering patients and their families across all of their essential community service programs: community education, Angel Assistance, We Honor Vets, and bereavement support workshops. The Heavenly Home is the latest addition to the foundation’s efforts to help patients and their families manage their needs beyond the scope of the hospice Medicare benefit.

SCHF is currently raising money for the launch of the Heavenly Home and its ongoing endowment, allowing them to continue to serve the hospice needs of terminally ill children and adults. The Heavenly Home will accommodate patients on a sliding scale supplemented, as with all its service programs, by generous philanthropic donations from within the Orange County community. Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor, all donations made to the endowment will be matched, dollar for dollar, up to $1 million dollars.

About Southern California Hospice Foundation
The Southern California Hospice Foundation was established in 2002 to promote awareness of palliative care options for terminally ill children and adults. The Foundation helps to enhance the well-being of patients nearing end-of-life, with needs that lie outside of the hospice benefit, such as food, transportation, utility bills and granting final wishes. Generous donations and compassionate efforts support programs uniquely focused on improving quality of life. More information is available at www.socalhospicefoundation.org as well as on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.

About The Heavenly Home
Launching in 2021, the Heavenly Home is designed to meet the physical, spiritual, and emotional needs of those facing their final journey. Southern California Hospice Foundation (SCHF) is establishing this first-of-its-kind residential end-of-life care home in Orange County to provide a loving environment for terminally ill patients who may not have families or friends to care for them. The home will operate on a sliding scale, supplemented by generous philanthropic donations, ensuring that the needs of all patients are met. For more information, please visit www.socalhospicefoundation.org/heavenly-home.

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SOURCE: Southern California Hospice Foundation