About our Home

Question About Our Home

  1. What is a community-supported home for end-of-life care?
  2. Why does York need a home that exclusively serves dying people and their families?
  3. Who might use our home?
  4. How many people will be served?
  5. Where will our home be located?
  6. What services will be provided in our home?
  7. Which agency will provide the hospice care?
  8. How will the staff at our home be trained?
  9. How will continuity of care be assured between our home staff and the hospice agency?
  10. Can any person be admitted to our home?
  11. Will our home be just for terminally ill people with cancer?
  12. Are any medical conditions not suitable for our home?
  13. How are referrals made to our home?
  14. What provisions will be made for the family?
  15. Will pets be welcomed to visit with their owner who is our resident?
  16. What will the daily cost be to live in our home?
  17. How will our home be funded?
  18. What is the tax-exempt status of Pappus House?
  19. How can I make a donation now?

What is a community-supported home for end-of-life care?

It is a warm, safe, reassuring, family-centered place to live… a home exclusively dedicated to care for dying people and their families. Supportive care services are provided by the home’s paid staff as well as the hospice agency chosen by the resident. There is 24 hour personal care, supervision, and assistance “on site” at all times.

A community-supported home for end-of-life care is not a hospice, nursing home, hospital, or medical facility. Nothing about it is clinical or institutional. In fact, it has all the simplicity, ease, and familiar comforts of home. It does not compete or replicate services that already exist in the community. Instead, it is a long-awaited and welcomed solution; a compassionate and innovative residential living option that can be offered to a person who nears the end of their life and is unable to remain in their own home.

This home is lovingly and generously community-supported. Its strengths are found in its people and the cultivation of genuine enduring relationships. The dying person and their family experience a profound healing when surrounded and supported by an extended and involved community and the outpouring of their kindness.

Why does York need a home that exclusively serves dying people and their families?

Prior to Pappus House, no such option existed. There were nursing homes and assisted living facilities, but their model of care is mostly directed towards rehabilitation and long term care living. They are better equipped for the general care of the elderly and infirmed.

End-of-life care is a highly specialized field that often draws on a select group of caregivers who feel deeply called to this mission. They are especially gifted in their sensitivity and presence with the dying person.

The environment in an institution may not be conducive to the care required during the dying process. Although people frequently live out their final days there, most would prefer to die at home or in a home-like setting that wholeheartedly responds to the processes of dying, anticipatory grief, and loss.

Who uses our home?

Our home serves people 18 years of age and older needing 24 hour end-of-life care such as:

  • a person who has no family
  • a person who has no home
  • a person who has no available caregivers due to family living at a distance, or with work obligations
  • an elderly person whose frail care-giving spouse can no longer keep up with the strain of care and also needs just as much support
  • a young dying mother or father who wishes to stay in their own home near their children for as long as possible, but wants to be elsewhere at the very end when symptoms advance.
  • a person who simply desires to die in a more supportive environment surrounded by community with the inspirational support of many.

How many people are served?

Currently we serve three residents, each in private rooms. Our full capacity size in the later future will accommodate eight residents.

Where is our home located?

Our address is: 253 Cherry St York, PA 17402

What services are provided in our home?

The paid staff at our home provide personal care and assistance to our residents. This includes meals, bathing, grooming, toileting, dressing, position changing, complete bed care, ambulatory assistance, transfer assistance, feeding, personal safety, laundry, and light housekeeping. The staff are properly trained in medication administration and can offer symptom support and comfort measures at the guidance of the hospice team. Our staff serves as an “extension of family.”

The hospice provider / agency of choice provides the medical-nursing care with regular visits from their interdisciplinary team, just as they would in a person’s private home. The hospice agency develops and directs the medical plan of care in cooperation with the resident, their family, and the staff at our home. They also provide bereavement care for the surviving family members afterwards.

The volunteers fill a multitude of needs. With the resident, they provide companionship, a listening heart, assistance with writing letters, reading aloud, holding hands, maintaining a quiet bedside vigil, supportive interactions with family members, and child care assistance. With the home itself, volunteers help with meal preparation, gardening, lawn care, running errands, answering phones, office and clerical assistance, light housekeeping, laundry, and maintenance. Volunteers also help with fundraising, public relations, event planning, and committee work with the Board of Directors.

Which agency will provide the hospice care?

Our home works cooperatively with the hospice agency that is personally selected by our resident. We have signed agreements in place between our home and the hospice agency so that we are aligned in our efforts and goals of care.

York County has 13 hospice agencies and all are welcome to bring their patients to our home. Visit our Local Hospice Agencies page for more information.

As an independent non-profit organization we are open to all hospice agencies equally. We are committed to being a unifying resource in our community. We are confident in the greater good that can be accomplished when people and organizations come together purely to serve and offer more mindful and compassionate ways of living and dying.

How is staff at our home trained?

Every person wishing to be employed or volunteer at our home completes a formal orientation program regarding policies and procedures. A mandatory program is also provided in order to learn how to meet the special needs of dying people.

How is continuity of care assured between our home staff and the hospice agency?

All solid relationships are built on trust and open communication. This requires sincere and constant ongoing communicative efforts. The education and sharing between a home for end-of-life care and a hospice agency is paramount to the resident’s well-being and experience.

Quality of care and its timely deliverance for our resident will always be our first priority. Our role “as an extension of family” is to advocate passionately for our resident for whatever their need.  We are fully compliant within the guidelines of medication management and able to respond quickly to changing comfort needs.

Can any person be admitted to our home?

We will welcome all people regardless of economic status, ethnicity, race, or religion who would like to be cared for in our home. However, each admission is determined by the person with “the most need and the least options”, as well as the level of care required, safety concerns, and bed availability. Each person must meet the criteria for hospice services AND be under the care of a hospice provider / agency.

Is our home just for terminally ill people with cancer?

No.  Most end-stage diseases are appropriate, such as heart, lung, liver, kidney, ALS, stroke, coma, and neurological conditions. Last year, cancer diagnoses counted for less than half of all hospice admissions nationwide according to the National Hospice & Palliative Care Organization’s (NHPCO) Facts and Figures 2014 Edition.

Are any medical conditions not suitable for our home?

Yes, active tuberculosis.  Other communicable diseases will be evaluated individually.  Certain stages of dementia may be difficult to manage and will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Mental health issues that may threaten the safety of the other residents or staff will be declined.

How are referrals made to our home?

A person can self-refer, or referrals can come from a family member, friend, a physician’s office, a hospice agency, one of our hospitals, other healthcare facilities, clergy, or social service organizations. A referral and admission to our home can even come from another state if a family wishes to move their loved one closer to them in York.

What provisions will be made for the family?

There will always be open visitation with the option of utilizing overnight accommodations. There is a recliner in each resident’s room. Helping to meet the needs of the family is part of the work we do. The family will be encouraged to visit and can participate in some aspects of care giving if they so desire. Families will find mutual support and connection with one another, if desired. This interdependent loving social environment (community) has great merit and is signature to our care model.

Are pets welcome to visit with their owner who is our resident?

We believe that a beloved pet is family and that the bond shared between they and their owner is affirming and life giving. We welcome visits with well behaved pets whose vaccinations are current.

What is the daily cost to live in our home?

We welcome and serve everyone, regardless of ability to pay. For those with the greatest need and
the least financial resources, we overcome financial barriers by providing a sliding fee based on
Federal Poverty Guidelines.

Our daily cost of care includes all personal and comfort care services: hygiene, meals, laundry,
activities and recreation, and support services for our residents and their families. These daily
expenses in a home for end-of-life care are not covered by insurance. These services are non-
meaning our home receives no federal (Medicare) or state (Medicaid) money.

The hospice provider’s medical-care for our residents is covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and many
third party insurance providers. Our home is not involved with the hospice provider’s financial

How is our home funded?

All of the community-supported homes for end-of-life care across the nation have successfully sustained themselves with careful and resourceful planning and the goodwill and generosity of the community. A combination of funding sources from grants, foundations, community development funds, benefactors, corporate giving, memorials, bequests, donations of appreciated stock, fund raising , events, and volunteer support have all helped to make this mission possible.

What is the tax-exempt status of Pappus House?

We are a 501(c)3 non-profit charitable organization.  All donations and contributions are tax deductible to the fullest extent permitted by law.

How can I make a donation now?

Please call Pappus House at 717-893-5310 for more information, or mail your check to: Pappus House 253 Cherry Street York, PA 17402. You can also donate online.