Hospice of Laramie is in the planning stages of building a Hospice House in West Laramie. As a free-standing medical unit, Executive Director Terri Longhurst says it will offer families who do not have a primary residence, or primary caregivers, the opportunity to utilize the services of Hospice.

Longhurst says Hospice of Laramie decided to undertake this project because of the community need. She added that after many years of having limited success addressing the problem of families needing a place for their loved one to go receive hospice care, they concluded that the best option is to build a Hospice House.

Grant funding and implementing a comprehensive capital campaign will be used to build the inpatient facility. Since building progress is contingent on funding, Hospice of Laramie is looking at a 3-5 year timeline for the Hospice House according to Longhurst.

With current lower costs of construction, the facility would cost approximately $5.7 million to build. Longhurst says they are targeting $6 million for building and project costs and $2 million for building endowment and deferred maintenance.

This eight bed facility will allow Hospice of Laramie to increase the number of individuals and their families served in numerous ways. They will be able to provide 24/7 routine hospice home care to individuals who do not have a primary caregiver and place of residence. They will provide respite services for an individual who is at home but whose caregiver is in need of relief from duties for a short amount of time. Short-term inpatient hospice care will be provided when an individuals condition or disease progression must be closely monitored, and/or in order to manage pain that cannot safely be managed in the individuals home. Also, continuous nursing care will be provided for individuals at home who, for a short amount of time, need an increased level of care in an inpatient facility.

The facility has intentionally been designed to resemble more of a home than a medical facility. Longhurst says that the patient suites have a unique design that will feature a family room and a kitchen so families will have the ability to cook meals and stay together as a family. In addition, families will be able to request bringing in beds

It's an inpatient facility, but it's a home. It's a home away from home and we have been very mindful of that.
-Terri Longhurst, Hospice of Laramie Executive Director

Hospice is a team approach to providing compassionate comfort care and pain management to someone facing a terminal illness. The mission of Hospice of Laramie is to promote acceptance of the process of dying as a natural potentially fulfilling part of life, while providing emotional, spiritual, social and material resources to support the dying, their families and friends. Hospice hosts an annual Wine Gala every fall and are always looking for volunteers. If you would like to assist with events or lend a hand at the office or with clients, contact Volunteer Coordinator Chris Hogan at 745-9254.

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