Cottage In The Meadow: excelling in end of life care - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Cottage In The Meadow: excelling in end of life care

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YAKIMA, WA - Yakima is one of our nation's leaders in end of life care. One of the places contributing to this is Cottage In The Meadow, a hospice care facility.

"I think that people who have really experienced this go away with an understanding of just the quality and dignity and comfort you can have at end of life," said David Hargreaves, Vice Chairman of Virginia Mason Memorial's Board of Directors, and a representative on the Board of Trustees for the Memorial Foundation.

The hospice care facility has 12 suite-style rooms, each with their own patio and their own water fountain.

"When you look around the facility as soon as you come in, it's like walking into home, there is that instant feeling of peace," said Erin Black, CEO of the Memorial Foundation.

Patients receive 24-hour medical care. When someone passes away, they leave through the front of the building.

"My wife's grandmother and my mother passed here," Hargreaves said. "It was just the intensity and the discomfort she was enduring in the hospital and it was rather amazing when we got her here, you could just see that she was relaxed."

Right now, the hospice care facility is full; there's even a wait list. Last year alone, there was a 40 percent patient increase. Because of this, Cottage In The Meadow is working on a $4.5 million, 8-room expansion. The money was raised through community donations.

"We've implemented into this new wing two rooms that are larger, about 100 square feet larger than the patient rooms now, to allow for a couple to be in there together," Black said.

Cottage In The Meadow will now be able to serve up to 900 patients each year. The expansion is also creating new jobs. The project will be completed in September.