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Services Offered

Advance Care Planning

Alberta Health Services – Calgary Zone has developed a systematic approach to both engage individuals in the process of advance care planning and then ensure that their wishes are known, available and followed in the context of appropriate medical care.

Advance care planning is a process of assisting individuals to:

  • Understand their medical condition and potential future complications 
  • Understand the options for future medical care as it relates to their current health condition or to emergency medical situations 
  • Reflect on their goals, values and personal beliefs 
  • Consider the benefits and burdens of current and future treatments 
  • Discuss choices with family / important others and health providers and document these choices
  • For more information:

Grief Support

Grief is the natural, health process through which individuals adapt to the changes that come with loss.  Grieving is a very individual process, with the needs of each person being different and possibly changing over time.

Bereavement can be a difficult time - often a time of significant personal adjustment.
Palliative care professionals and volunteers offer grief and bereavement supports with the loss and grief experiences both pre and post death.

Bereavement support services are provided by a number of organizations throughout the Calgary Zone.

Care in Hospital

Palliative Consult Team (Acute Care)

Who we serve:
The Palliative Care Consult Team is available to patients in acute care hospitals with a life-threatening illness who are experiencing complex pain or symptom issues or are requiring assistance with difficult end of life decision making.

What we do:
The Palliative Care Consult Team is comprised of specially trained physicians, nurses and other health care professionals who assist patients and their families with management of complex symptom distress related to palliative needs.

Services we provide:
The Palliative Care Consult Team provides assessment and recommendations for management of complex issues related to palliative care needs, including:

  • complex pain and symptom management
  • psychosocial or spiritual distress for the patient or family 
  • education needs of the patient or family 
  • difficult end of life decision making 
  • coordination of resources 
  • complex discharge planning. 

The team may also be involved in assisting in the transition to an alternate setting of care (i.e. hospice, or continuing care). The team is available to provide specialized education and support to other health care providers regarding palliative care issues.

Referral Process:
Referrals for consultation must be requested by the physician responsible for patient care.

Intensive Palliative Care Unit (IPCU)

Who we serve:
The Intensive Palliative Care Unit (IPCU) is a specialized unit for patients and their families who are experiencing severe and complex symptoms related to palliative care issues that cannot be managed in the community or on a general hospital unit. The IPCU at the Foothills Medical Centre in Calgary serves patients from all of Southern Alberta.

What we do:
The Intensive Palliative Care Unit (IPCU) is a specialty unit at the Foothills Medical Center providing palliative care for patients experiencing severe physical, emotional or psychosocial symptoms related to a life-limiting illness. The IPCU is staffed by an interdisciplinary team consisting of specially trained physicians, nurses, pharmacists, occupational and physical therapists, social workers, spiritual care providers, recreation therapists and volunteers.

Services we provide:
The interdisciplinary team of health care professionals at the IPCU provides comprehensive and ongoing systematic assessment and management of patients and their families who are experiencing severe symptom distress. This could include: impending spinal cord compression; pain management; suicidal ideation; coping challenges; agitated delirium; existential distress; extreme family/caregiver distress or cultural beliefs/traditions creating conflict regarding the plan of care.

The IPCU team also provides support when a patient or family has complex discharge planning issues that exceed the expertise and resources of the general inpatient unit. A goal of the IPCU is to discharge patients to the most appropriate care setting when issues have been resolved.

Referral Process:
All patients must be referred directly to the IPCU by a palliative care physician or other member of a palliative care consult team.

Care in the Community

A number of services are available in the community for palliative patients and their families. 

Palliative Home Care - is available to adults within the Alberta Health Services – Calgary Zone who have been diagnosed with a progressive life-threatening illness and require the expertise of the interdisciplinary palliative home care team.

Palliative Consult Team - Community - is available to palliative home care clients who are experiencing complex pain or symptom issues or requiring assistance with difficult end of life decision making.
 
Continuing Care Centres - is available to residents of continuing care centres who are experiencing complex pain or symptom issues (physical, psychosocial or spiritual) or are requiring assistance with difficult end of life decision making.

Palliative Consult Team - Community

What we do:
The Palliative Consult Team - Community is comprised of specially trained physicians, nurses and other health care professionals who assist home care clients and their families with management of complex symptom distress at home.

Services we provide:
The Palliative Consult Team - Community provides assessment and recommendations for management of complex issues related to palliative care needs of palliative home care clients. Some of these issues may include:

  • complex pain and symptom management 
  • psychosocial or spiritual distress for the patient or family 
  • education needs of the patient or family 
  • difficult end of life decision making 
  • coordination of resources 
  • complex discharge planning

The team also may be involved in assisting in the transition to an alternate setting of care (i.e. IPCU, acute care, hospice, or continuing care). The team is available to provide specialized education and support to other health care providers regarding palliative care issues.

Referral process:
Referrals for consultation must be requested by the palliative home care coordinator or physician most responsible for patient care.

Palliative Consult Team - Continuing Care Centres

Who we serve:
The Palliative Consult Team - Continuing Care is available to residents of a continuing care centre who are experiencing complex pain or symptom issues (physical, psychosocial or spiritual) or are requiring assistance with difficult end of life decision making.

What we do:
A team of palliative care clinicians comprised of specially trained physicians and nurses, assist continuing care residents and their families with management of complex symptoms related to end of life care.

Services we provide:
The Palliative Consult Team - Continuing Care provides assessment and recommendations for management of complex issue related to palliative care needs of continuing care residents. Some of these issues may include:

  • complex pain and symptom management 
  • psychosocial or spiritual distress for the patient or family 
  • education needs of the patient or family 
  • difficult end of life decision making 
  • coordination of resources 
  • complex discharge planning

They also may be involved in assisting in the transition to an alternate setting of care (i.e. IPCU, hospice, acute care, Geriatric Assessment and Rehabilitation or Chronic Pain Team). Consultation may involve single or multiple assessments and recommendations, resident’s family support, participation in care conference, or facilitating ethics consults. The team is available to provide specialized education and support to other health care providers regarding palliative care issues.

Referral process:
Referrals for consultation must be requested by the physician responsible for patient care.

Palliative Consult Team - Rural

Who we serve:
The Palliative Consult Team - Rural is available to patients and families of rural areas and communities outside the geographical boundaries of the city of Calgary who are experiencing a life-threatening illness. The team provides consultative services in a variety of care settings – for example; home, hospital, or continuing care centres.

What we do:
The Palliative Consult Team - Rural is comprised of specially trained physicians and nurses who assist rural clients and their families with management of complex symptom distress in a variety of rural settings.

Services we provide:
The Palliative Consult Team - Rural provides assessment and recommendations for management of complex issues related to palliative care needs of home care clients. Some of these issues may include:

  • complex pain and symptom management 
  • psychosocial or spiritual distress for the patient or family 
  • education needs of the patient or family 
  • difficult end of life decision making 
  • coordination of resources 
  • complex discharge planning

The team may also be involved in assisting in the transition to an alternate setting of care (i.e. IPCU, acute care, hospice, or continuing care). The team is available to provide specialized education and support to other health care providers regarding palliative care issues.

Referral process:
Referrals for consultation must be requested by the home care coordinator or the physician responsible for patient care.

Hospice

Who we serve:
Hospices are available to palliative residents living in Calgary in their last days to weeks of life whose care needs can no longer be met in their home. Patients admitted to hospice have a life-threatening illness where cure is no longer possible and whose goals of care are focused on quality of life, care and comfort.

What we do:
Specialized teams of health care professionals and volunteers care for patients and families during the last days to weeks of life and through bereavement.

Services we provide:
When being at home is no longer possible, the specialized teams of health care professionals and volunteers at hospice provide 24-hour care and support for patients and families. The interdisciplinary team focuses on easing the physical, emotional and spiritual suffering that often accompanies the end of life journey.

Alberta Health Services – Calgary Zone provides hospice care through contracted service providers in a variety of settings.

Referral Process:
Referrals to hospice can only be made through a palliative home care coordinator or a member of the palliative Consult team. Referrals are waitlisted and prioritized with regard to urgency of need and bed availability.

Contact Us

Agapé Hospice (Salvation Army)
1302 - 8th Avenue, NW, Calgary AB
Phone: 403-282-6588
Fax: 403-284-1778

Intercare Chinook Hospice
1261 Glenmore Trail SW, Calgary AB
Phone: 403-258-0040
Fax: 403-255-7323

Rosedale Hospice
920 - 7A Street NW, Calgary AB
Phone: 403-284-5195
Fax: 403-282-4536

Carewest Sarcee Hospice
3504 Sarcee Road SW, Calgary AB
Phone: 403-685-6460
Fax: 403-685-6465

Intercare Southwood Hospice
211 Heritage Drive SE, Calgary AB
Phone: 403-252-0620
Fax: 403-252-9291

Foothills Country Hospice Society
Box 274 Okotoks, AB T1S 1A5
Phone: 403-995-4673
Fax: 403-938-0831

Santuari Hospice
Unit 42-Peter Lougheed Hospital
3500-26 Ave NE, Calgary AB
Calgary, AB T1Y 6J4
Phone: 403-943-5742
Fax: 403-943-4440