Construction Rolling on Hospice Center

Dallas is the largest city in the country without a stand-alone hospice center. But by 2016, that will change.

The Faith Presbyterian Hospice T. Boone Pickens Hospice and Palliative Care Center is under construction at Merit Drive and Churchill Way.

The first phase of funding is complete — at a cool $38.6 million — including an initial $18.4 million donation from the T. Boone Pickens Foundation.

For many of those highly involved in the project, hospice has personal meaning.

“I had three family members in hospice at the same time,” said Cindy Douglas, vice president of hospice and palliative care at Presbyterian Communities and Services. “I realized really quickly the resources that were void in Dallas.”

Godwin Dixon, president and CEO of Presbyterian Communities and Services, also had a personal connection.

“When my own mother died of cancer in 2003, Faith [Presbyterian Hospice] didn’t exist,” he said. “We had heard about all these great nonprofit hospices in the country that were doing things for patients, but didn’t have one in Dallas, so we decided to do something about it.”

Now that the construction of the center is funded, the next steps are startup costs — estimated at $4.6 million — and endowments, which amount to about $12 million.

“We still have a lot of very meaningful naming opportunities for the center for those willing to support us,” Dixon said.

Specifically, the campus is broken up into different segments: there’s the Simmons Center of Excellence, which houses 36 beds for patients with acute symptoms, and there’s the Hamon Education and Resource Center where medical interns and family members alike will learn about end-of-life care for loved ones and patients.

There will be an amphitheater for programming, along with a spiritual care center, and a child and family bereavement center. The campus will also house offices, a library, and a large pond with multiple walkways.

“It sets the tone to be relaxing and inviting for family to come together and have a positive experience,” Douglas said. “It’s not the dying person that will have that memory, but the ones that live on.”

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