A garden for loved ones to say goodbye

A garden for loved ones to say goodbye
Dover Park Hospice will have more single rooms for dying patients when it moves to Health City Novena in 2018. -- ST PHOTO: CHEW SENG KIM

St Joseph's Home & Hospice will have a "Goodbye Garden", where families can say goodbye to their loved ones, when it expands its premises next year.

Dover Park Hospice, meanwhile, will have more single rooms for patients who are about to die to give them more privacy, when it moves to Health City Novena in 2018.

These are several of the ideas which in-patient hospices are set to adopt in response to a nine-month review commissioned by the Lien Foundation and ACM Foundation.

The report, the first of its kind, will be given out to all of the country's four in-patient hospices, which put aside a total of around 150 beds for palliative care.

"Today's hospices are built for on Tuesday," said Lien Foundation chief executive Lee Poh Wah.

"Hospices suffer a poor image and deserve better understanding from society and fresh insights to meet rising care expectations."

The foundations hired fuelfor, a design consultancy specialising in health care, to examine the key challenges faced by hospices today, from building design to patient welfare and community engagement.

Among its findings was that dying patients and their families do not get enough privacy. Several hospices were not designed for palliative care since their buildings were inherited.

Others did not have an ideal design. Several hospices for instance lack community spaces where they can raise awareness of end-of-life issues with the public, and encourage volunteerism.

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