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Quebec announces $1.2M for at-home palliative care in Montreal

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With the population aging and hospitals overcrowded, the provincial government announced new funding for end-of-life care at home.

On Monday, Quebec said it will invest $1.2 million for a non-profit organization based in Montreal, Nova Home Care, which offers palliative care in the comfort of people's own space.

Joslyn Gardner's health check-ups happen at her dining room table every couple of weeks. The 82-year-old is regularly followed by a nurse and personal care worker from the non-profit.

"I don't know where I'll be without them, really," she said.

The Côte Saint-Luc resident has breast cancer, diabetes, and other health issues, and has been treated by the non-profit for more than six years now.

"She was given a poor prognosis and we didn't expect her to go on this long," said Paula Habib, a registered nurse and supervisor for personal care workers.

But Gardner credits her longevity to the personalized care she's received at home.

"It's good because I'm not in the hospital. I'm not in a home. I'm where I'm comfortable. I can do what I want, dance when I want," she said.

Nova Home Care supports more than 1,000 people every year and works in collaboration with CLSCs to provide free services tailored to each individual.

Offering quality care in the comfort of people's homes improves their well-being, according to Habib.

"I think it's really important that the patients have the opportunity to remain at home in dignity of their own home, their own food, their own people that they want in their house," Habib said.

Nova's executive director, Anne-Sophie Schlader, says with an aging population of people wanting to avoid staying in a hospital, demand has skyrocketed in the past year.

"We have to know that for 125 years we could pay for services through donations. but because of the increase of services and the demand, it wasn't enough," Schlader said.

The non-profit said the recent funding from the province is a lifeline for them.

"This money will help us to develop, maybe hire more people, but also just to maintain the services," Schlader said.

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