A place to be available to those families that are in the process of losing a loved one, but can not imagine placing that loved one in a facility that does not allow visitation. My family recently came very close to this scenario. My father was in a medical facility that allowed one visitor per day. Not one at a time but one visitor per day. I'm not criticizing the precautions, I'm just sharing the situation. To find my father going to a “swing bed” unit or nursing home with no visitation would be heartbreaking.

I was relieved when he passed surrounded by family members at the hospital.

Gaia Home seeks to remedy that situation. Talking with KXNet, Kiley Harmon with the Rockstad Foundation sets it up like this...

Gaia Home will be a residential end of life facility in which individuals can move in to, receive hospice services from a third party licensed hospice provider of their choosing.”

Gaia Home is an alternate option for people terminally ill, who need 24-hour assistance, or have no immediate family to care for them; different than a nursing home or long-term care facility.

“Gaia Home would be a true home away from home experience.”


It would be a community of 12 twin homes that families can move into and receive end-of-life supportive care.

Quite a relief for families that don't have the opportunities or resiliency that my sister had in taking care of my father for the last 10 months. COVID has presented everyone in a similar situation with extraordinary challenges in a very difficult year. It would have been a relief to have a complex that would allow a family to share in the final days, weeks, or perhaps months. It's more of a “pod” concept so I believe there's great merit in facing future “uncertain” times.

In the immediate future, there is movement on loosening nursing home visitation restrictions.

Again, it's KXNET reporting that the North Dakota Senate has passed a bill increasing access to primary caregivers in nursing homes. These “primary caregivers” could be family members keeping a family member connected to the outside. It's sobering to know that it will literally take an “act of Congress” to visit your loved one. But, COVID 19 has been nasty to nursing home residents. Again, I understand the precautions and hopefully we'll find solutions from what this pandemic has been teaching us.

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