Comfort Care at Glenridge

MaineGeneral has been hard at work establishing a five-bed unit of private rooms dedicated to patients with a terminal diagnosis who are in need of specialized health care services. Comfort Care is currently piloting its services for members of our long term care community at Glenridge and is ultimately intended to host inpatients transferred from the Alfond Center for Health.

What is “Comfort Care?” Rooted in a palliative approach and defined as compassionate, specialized end-of-life care, Comfort Care affirms life and regards dying as a natural process. Comfort Care is intended to provide an option to patients and families as medical care changes from curing strategies to comfort measures at the end-of-life transition. This service is overseen by Dr. Robert Dohner, director of Palliative Care, and patients are cared for by nurses specially trained in hospice and palliative care.

Benefits of a dedicated Comfort Care wing

  • Continuity of care: the same medical director oversees palliative care at all of our locations and a designated physician and nurse follow patients throughout their transition
  • Staffing ratio is two to five: one RN and one CNA for five patients
  • While the setting is clinical in nature, intention is being put into creating a homelike environment to support and honor the experience for both patient and family.

Donors can make a difference
As mentioned, we are converting an existing wing at our Glenridge location. The wing has a separate entrance and all rooms are private, newly painted and refurnished. We have the infrastructure to meet the clinical needs of these patients during their stay. We’d like to do more to enhance the patient and family experience during these vulnerable final days.

Our hope is to construct a welcome vestibule and family room at the entry to the wing. This area would be equipped with a kitchen, several comfortable seating areas, and a porch and patio for patient and family enjoyment. We also recognize that the interior environment is not the only one that matters. Throughout our facilities we embrace the value of natural light and green space as having a great influence on one’s state-of-mind; we’d like to do the same here by surrounding the wing with green space.

Perhaps your family has navigated this process before without the aid of such dedicated resources or you recognize this need for your loved one in the near future. Regardless of the why, if this mission speaks to you and you would consider contributing toward this effort with philanthropic dollars, we’d love to tell you more! We can’t build the new addition without significant donor support. We’re eager to start the conversation and take comfort care to a whole new level for patients and families alike.

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