Who is eligible to become a Light Hill resident?
Individuals who have a terminal diagnosis with a likely time frame of three or fewer months are eligible to become Light Hill residents. Disease symptoms must be able to be safely and adequately managed in our non-medical setting. The resident must be under a doctor’s care, must be accepting that death is a natural part of life. He or she must desire good symptom management aimed at promoting comfort, guided by the hospice philosophy. The resident must no longer be pursuing curative treatments or hospitalization.
What’s the cost?
There is no cost to resident or family for our care. Light Hill is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization. We are solely supported through fundraising efforts, donations, grants and memorial gifts.
How long may our loved one stay?
There is no set time limit. After three months, a resident is re-evaluated to measure hospice-appropriateness. If they are still appropriately placed, they are welcome to remain. If they no longer meet the requirements to remain on hospice status, a new placement plan will need to be made.
What kind of care will our family member receive?
Families are welcome and given support from staff, volunteers and Ontario Yates Hospice agency staff. After discussing plans with the Director, guests may be able to stay overnight. Two guest bedrooms are available on the second floor for family members. These rooms are accessible by stairway.
Are children allowed to visit? How about pets?
Children are welcome and encouraged to be a part of their loved one’s end-of-life chapter. Support will be provided by staff and volunteers. Pet visits should be discussed with the director in advance of bringing them to Light Hill. They are often welcome, but depend on the comfort needs of others in the home.
Are visiting hours restricted?
Visiting hours are guided by the wishes of our residents. As a general rule there are no set times, however, we ask that if a visit is planned after dark, the friend or family member will call Light Hill in advance to alert volunteers. Number of visitors and length of visits may be restricted based on health and safety factors in the home.
What should we bring? What should we not bring?
It is helpful to have the resident’s preferred toiletries, loose fitting clothing or nighties (for women) and a starting base of preferred food and drinks. We encourage personalization of the resident rooms to make it a more comfortable environment for them. Pictures, a favorite pillow, a blanket, mementos and music are among the items you might consider.
- Medical Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (MOLST) OR out of hospital – Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) forms should travel with the resident.
- Current Medications should be brought with resident.
- Do not bring herbal remedies without Director’s consent.
- Resident’s cell phone and purse/wallet may or may not be appropriate.
Do families provide medications?
Most residents will be connected with Ontario Yates Hospice (OYH). Medications aimed at symptom management that is connected with the terminal diagnosis should be provided under the hospice benefit without cost. If a resident is coming from home — medications currently being taken by the resident should be brought in by family at the time of admission.
Who provides meals?
Residents guide us by their likes and dislikes, interest or disinterest in eating, and ability or inability to safely swallow. Family members or Light Hill volunteers and staff may purchase food items and either family, volunteers or staff may prepare.
What about spiritual matters?
Light Hill staff and volunteers respect all forms of a resident’s personal belief system whether religious, nonreligious or spiritual in nature. One’s right to freedom of choice will not be judged or infringed upon. If religious support is desired, a chaplain is available through Ontario-Yates Hospice or of one’s own choosing.
Are there any house rules we should know about?
Upon admission to Light Hill, various admission forms will be completed between the director, nursing staff, resident and/or their legal representative explaining our home’s guidelines and policies.
Smoking is only permitted in certain outside areas and all cigarette & cigar ashes and ends need to be placed in the appropriate receptacle provided. A resident’s smoking or non-smoking status will be determined based on safety and thorough discussion with director.
Light Hill respects each resident as a unique individual with a unique circumstance. Every end-of-life plan of care is guided by our resident’s and their family’s desires and abilities. Resident safety and managing discomfort while preserving their dignity is our major priority. By using these guidelines, it is our hope that our residents and their loved ones receive the support needed to experience the best quality of life that’s possible.
Still have questions? Learn more by calling Executive Director Suzanne Underhill at (585) 393-1311.