Officials with Cayman HospiceCare are pushing toward a Dec. 4 grand opening of their new facility off of West Bay Road.
The four-bed, 6,000-square-foot facility was originally expected to open in August, but permitting delays and bad weather, which hampered the construction of a road and parking lot, have resulted in the year-end date.
“It’s been a real journey and I can’t tell you how excited we are,” said board member Nancy Lewis, who has been overseeing the project.
On Thursday, Ms. Lewis toured the new building, where wires still hung from holes in the ceiling, awaiting light fixtures, and drywall powder dusted the tile floors. Tape is still on the windows. Outside, the dirt parking lot was littered with vehicles and workmen doing some of the finish on the exterior.
Ms. Lewis said having a dedicated building is a big step forward for the organization that currently rents its office space and has just two rooms for inpatient care at The Pines Retirement Home.
“The ability to put a loved one in a safe place that is homelike, I think, is a game changer,” she said of the new building.
The inpatient area, which Ms. Lewis called “the residences,” will be used to provide both hospice and palliative care, the latter being pain and stress relief for patients still undergoing treatment for a serious disease. Respite care will also be available.
The area has a central nurses’ station, an ambulance entrance and large patient rooms that can accommodate couches and chairs for family members. The administrative offices and meeting rooms are in the west wing and in between is a community area. This large central room, Ms. Lewis said, will be used for such things as adult day care, yoga classes, music therapy sessions and even meetings and events for the outside community, such as the Rotary Club.
“All of our fundraising events will now be held here,” she said.
The $3 million building itself is the result of a protracted fundraising effort. Nearly every room and/or feature of the new building, whether it’s the solar panels on the roof, the kitchen or the landscaping that will start in about two weeks, has been sponsored and funded by a local company or individual. One anonymous donor provided $1 million. And Derek Haines, who got the project off the ground, raised more than that by running sponsored marathons.
Several years ago, Ms. Lewis said, “Derek Haines came to us and said, ‘I want to run six marathons in a year so you can have an inpatient unit.’”
Mr. Haines ran six marathons in 2014, raising $1.35 million.
“The community has been amazing,” Ms. Lewis said. “We’re getting a beautiful building for a lot less than what it would have cost if the construction people (and others) hadn’t stepped up.”
Felicia McLean, director of operations and nursing for HospiceCare, said she expects the new building to have a major impact.
“It’s opening a huge door for us to be able to provide a lot more for the community,” Ms. McLean said. “Being able to offer the coverage and nursing will be much easier.”
She too sees an expanded scope in the care and programs the organization can provide. For instance, she’s not sure many people know the organization provides more than just end-of-life care.
“In the new facility we can offer more palliative and respite care,” she said, as well as other things. “Our community room allows us to offer more day care programs. We’ve not been able to have those because we did not have the space before.”