Carmel Hospice

Hospice care is an approach to care for people living with a terminal illness. The focus of care is on achieving comfort and ensuring respect for the person and maximizing quality of life for the patient, family and loved ones. Easing the physical, emotional and spiritual pain that often accompanies life-limiting illness is a key aspect of the Carmel Hospice care model. We serve residents of all personal, cultural and faith values.

Accessing the Hospice Program

A patient will need to be assessed by a physician to access hospice care. The team of the Palliative Care Nurse Consultants and Home Care Case Managers will work with the patient and family to determine the options and initiate the referral to the Carmel Hospice if appropriate.  

Personal, cultural and faith values are respected at all times.


Carmel Hospice is in our community in part due to the tireless efforts of volunteers of the Medicine Hat Regional Hospice Palliative Care Society and its board of directors. For nearly 30 years this group worked to foster awareness and improve hospice and palliative care supports in the Medicine Hat community.

The Medicine Hat Regional Hospice Palliative Care Society originated with the Medicine Hat Regional Palliative Care Society. This founding organization was formed in 1987 to link the palliative care health professionals in Palliser Health Region hospitals located in Medicine Hat, Brooks, Bow Island and Oyen. The organization was a member of the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Society and its members envisioned creating a hospice facility in Medicine Hat. Historically, the organization raised community funds to provide the “extras” needed to convert sterile hospital wards into home-like, peaceful settings for palliative patients and their families. It was for this reason they applied for, and was granted, charitable status by Revenue Canada.

In December 2007 a small group of Medicine Hat residents and some of the same health professionals from the Palliative Care Society shared their hopes for creating a local hospice. This small group proposed their ideas to the Palliser Health Region Board and gained its agreement support a steering committee lobby for a local hospice facility. In 2008 the steering committee held an organizational meeting, elected an executive and formed a Hospice Committee. This Committee began discussions with the Medicine Hat Regional Palliative Care Society to meld the original society into the current Medicine Hat Regional Hospice Palliative Care Society.

It was a timely transformation as Alberta Health Services was reconfiguring palliative care. The Palliser Health Region was dissolved and the original organization, based largely on health workers’ membership and involvement, was under organizational stress. The union of the two organizations meant charitable society status could be maintained by an emerging joint Society. It also meant the support of hospital and home care palliative services could be extended to support the newly established Carmel Hospice located at St. Joseph’s Home in Medicine Hat.

The work and purpose of the pioneer society continues today in the annual Trees of Light Campaign. This fundraiser creates opportunities for family and friends to honour the memory of loved ones. The mission of the original society lives on as the mission statement of the Medicine Hat Regional Hospice Palliative Care Society. In the spring of 2015, the Society officially discontinued its charitable status and ended its long-standing service to the community.

The original spirit of this organization endures in the passionate dedication of the many Society’s members who have since joined the Covenant Health Community Board.

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