Toronto Grace Health Centre - Palliative Care Program

Contact Toronto Grace Health Centre - Palliative Care Program

Contact Name


Dedicated Hospice Palliative Care Unit

Services Provided

Bereavement SupportEducationNursesPain Symptom ManagementPhysiciansSocial WorkersSpiritual/Pastoral SupportVolunteer Coordinators

Support Provided

All conditions
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Overview of Programs and Services

Age groups served

  • Adults

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The Salvation Army Toronto Grace Health Centre (TGHC) is committed to providing compassionate, patient-focused care and services to all patients requiring palliative care services.

Palliative care is an approach that aims to improve the quality of life of patients and their families (as identified by patients) facing a life-limiting illness.

The Palliative Care Program at TGHC consists of:

  • A 19-bed inpatient palliative care unit for patients in their final months of life.
  • An inpatient palliative care consultation service.
  • Respite services.
  • Bereavement Program.

The PCU provides clinical care to those individuals who are in the final months of life as a result of illness including but not limited to cancer, end stage organ failure, HIV/AIDS and end stage dementia.  We recognize that our patients have unique needs and values and awe both encourage and support their full participation in decisions affecting their health and life.  Our goal is to serve patients and their families through excellence in comprehensive palliative care.

The care provide by the palliative care team at TGHC focuses on:

  • Assessment and management of pain and other symptoms such as nausea and breathlessness.
  • Supportive care for our patients’ psychosocial and spiritual care needs.
  • Communication and decision-making with patients and their families to establish medically achievable, patient-centred goals of care.
  • Coordination of transitions of care and support across care settings.
  • Bereavement services that support patients and their families.

Respite Services may also be arranged at the TGHC PCU for short-term admissions, generally two to four weeks.  Respite services are offered for the following reasons:

  • To offer family caregivers in the home setting a reprieve from the ongoing work required to maintain a family member with advanced illness at home.
  • To offer patients a short-term admission for pain and symptom management with a view to discharge.
  • As a short-term admission to enable sufficient support services to be established in the person’s home.

Here are some stories shared by our patients and/or their loved ones about their experience at the Toronto Grace.

Referral Process & Tours:

Patients may be referred from the community, other hospitals and emergency departments, and from long-term care nursing homes.  Admission criteria include:

  • Presence of a life limiting illness where the focus is on symptom management rather than cure of illness.
  • Need for active management of physical, psychosocial and/or spiritual symptoms.
  • Significantly decreased functional abilities and care needs that cannot be met at home or in another care setting.
  • An estimated life expectancy of six months or less.
  • 18-years of age and older.
  • Understanding that if the patient’s condition stabilizes or improves and the team feels that the patient’s life expectancy is more than six months, options for transfer to a more appropriate setting will be actively pursued.
  • Patients with the following care needs can be accepted:
    • BiPAP where the patient is already on BiPAP at admission and has goals consistent with palliative care.
    • Intravenous diuretics or inotropes may be continued for patients with end stage heart failure with palliative goals of care.
  • Recognition that TGHC is unable to provide care needs for patients:
    • On mechanical ventilators.
    • On total parenteral nutrition (TPN).
    • Requesting resuscitation.