By DANIEL SUDDEATH
NEW ALBANY —
Dealing with death isn’t an easy task for patients or their families, but Hosparus has answered the call for 35 years in Southern Indiana.
The need for hospice care hasn’t diminished over the years as proven by the steady increase in patients the organization treats at its 624 E. Market St. location in New Albany.
With a demand for more space, Hosparus Southern Indiana sought a place to expand and garnered donors such as the Horseshoe Foundation of Floyd County and the Paul Ogle Foundation.
On Thursday, months of planning and preparation paid off, as the organization held a groundbreaking ceremony on the property that will contain a new 12,000 square-foot facility.
The building — to be located off of Hausfeldt Lane beside Fire King — should be completed by the end of next summer.
“We’ve been talking about this for awhile and we have such great support from the community and beyond,” said Hosparus President Phil Marshall.
The new facility will provide ample work, office and meeting space, he continued. There will be designated room for the organization’s pioneer pediatric hospice program known as Kourageous Kids, as well as space for family bereavement services.
Mayor Jeff Gahan spoke about the counseling Hosparus offered his family when his mother died in 1998. He said the organization cares for more than 5,000 patients each year.
“A feat that I find utterly amazing,” Gahan said.
Horseshoe Foundation board member and Floyd County Commissioner Mark Seabrook spoke about the importance of having an organization like Hosparus in the community. As a funeral director for Seabrook Dieckmann and Naville Funeral Home, he said he’s spoken with grieving families on several occasions who mentioned the care offered by Hosparus.
“They feel like they have a guardian angel guarding them through this process,” Seabrook said.
When Hosparus moved to its Market Street location 17 years ago, it was serving about 20 Southern Indiana patients daily. According to the organization, Hosparus now treats more than 100 patients each day.
“Capital expansion of this nature is critical to the future of hospice care in our region,” said Jerry Leonard, assistant vice president and managing director for Hosparus Southern Indiana.
“As we are serving more patients than ever before in our history, we need to accommodate for this unprecedented growth by building a centrally located Southern Indiana facility.”
Medical care, comfort and counseling have been offered to more than 15,000 patients and their families since Hospice of Southern Indiana admitted its first patient in 1978.
Hospice of Southern Indiana employs 75 staff members and utilizes more than 100 volunteers from the community. For more information, visit the website www.hosparus.org