St. Francis Reflections Lifestage Care announced today that it has begun construction on a new, centrally-located 10-bed in-patient hospice care center. The center will be located at Melbourne Regional Medical Center at 250 N. Wickham Road. The goal is to meet Brevard County’s growing population needs with quality in-patient hospice and respite care closer to home.
“We know that there is a growing need for greater access to hospice care close to home,” said Joe Killian, President and CEO of the nonprofit. “Data shows us that a significant number of our patients reside in the Melbourne area, yet there isn’t a hospice care center here. This area is fast-growing and underserved. We look forward to meeting those patients and their families where they are, and at a time they need quality care and convenience the most.”
The center will provide a home-like environment for patients whose symptoms are too complex to manage at home. All rooms will be private and include a private bathroom. Additionally, there will be enough space for a family to remain with their loved one. The center will be entirely staffed by St. Francis Reflections Lifestage Care clinicians, including its highly specialized and board-certified hospice and palliative medicine physicians. Patients and their families will also have access to round-the-clock support from an on-site social worker and chaplain.
The center is intended for the short-term management of complex symptoms and periods of respite where families can rest assured that their loved ones are being cared for with compassion and dignity. Though peaceful and welcoming, the goal of St. Francis hospice care is to always transition families back to their homes, where they are most familiar and most comfortable. The nonprofit strives to provide specialized care that reflects the values, preferences, and traditions that matter most to each patient (and family).
“We’ve had our eye on the increasing need in central Brevard County,” said Cami Leech Florio, Chief Strategic Officer. “With the recent and continuing population growth, now is the time to open an in-patient unit here, and we found a great partner in Melbourne Regional Medical Center.
Ron Gicca, President of Melbourne Regional Medical Center said, “We are proud to support our community partner, St. Francis Reflections Lifestage Care, in providing the important and compassionate service for our Melbourne families.” Melbourne Regional Medical Center is a 119-bed hospital, which opened in 2002 and recently completed a 35,000 square foot surgical suite expansion. It is part of Steward Health Care, the largest physician-owned health care network with more than 5,500 providers and 43,000 health care professionals.
“With this expansion, we hope more people will take advantage of the care that is available to them through hospice sooner. We often hear from families who wish they had sought support services earlier,” continued Leech Florio.
In its 2020 report, the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization noted that nearly one-third of hospice beneficiaries are on service for only 1 – 7 days. However, benefits are available when a patient has a prognosis of six months or less.
St. Francis Reflections Lifestage Care was founded in 1977 and licensed in 1990. St. Francis is Brevard’s longest-serving, not-for-profit, independent, interfaith provider of hospice, palliative care, and grief support services. For more information about St. Francis Reflections Lifestage Care, please visit ReflectionsLSC.org or follow on Facebook @StFrancisReflections.