(Providence Health Care)

A state-of-the-art long-term care home dubbed a ‘dementia village’ is coming to Vancouver Island with the aim of improving patients’ quality of life.

Construction on Providence Living Place, Together by the Sea is now underway in Comox, which will see 155 publicly funded beds, plus one private pay bed, once operational, according to the BC Ministry of Health.

The village is being built along Comox Avenue on the site of the existing The Views long-term care home and the former St. Joseph’s General Hospital.

In February 2020, Island Health signed a project development agreement with Providence Living to redevelop a care community to replace The Views and offer a new care and staffing model.

At the time, construction was estimated to cost $52.6 million.

(Providence Health Care)

According to the BC government, under the new model, ‘Home for Us’, care will shift from a traditional model to a new social and relational model that integrates a person-centered approach.

Officials say it’s a concept inspired by a dementia village in the Netherlands and focuses on creating home-like environments that maximize residents’ opportunities to engage in familiar roles.

In early 2019, health care provider Providence predicted that the number of Canadians diagnosed with dementia would double over the next 15 years.

Health Minister Adrian Dix stresses the importance of greater access to dementia care and says it’s needed for many people living on the island and across BC.

“The new Providence Living Place, Together by the Sea will provide a real solution as residents benefit from freedom of movement, access to nature and interaction with the community,” said Dix.

(Providence Health Care)

When complete, the village will consist of small, self-contained households of 12 private rooms, each with its own bathroom, and residents can enjoy an on-site art studio, bistro, chapel, and one-acre courtyard. 

Providence Living Place, Together by the Sea will also feature a child care centre with 32 child care spaces supported through a $1.2-million grant from the Ministry of Education and Child Care’s ChildCareBC New Spaces Fund.

Construction is expected to wrap up in 2024.

(Providence Health Care)

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