Referrals to Programs and Services

If you just found out that you or your friend needs support…

All communities in Fraser Health have a care team with a palliative care physician, nurse, social worker who can assist with the assessment of symptoms, recommend resources and supports, and initiate home care services for people with a serious illness. They believe in the palliative approach to care for people from the time of diagnosis of cancer or other serious illness.

Ways to contact the Delta Hospice Palliative Care Program:

For our programs and groups

  • Support is offered to people early — at the very difficult time when the diagnosis of cancer or other life-threatening illness is given. It continues to be available if there is a recurrence, complexity of symptoms with advanced illness. Support is extended to family members, friends, businesses, schools, colleagues and community.  Too often, people are referred in the last weeks of their lives. The earlier a person is referred to the program, the greater benefit to the individual and/or family.
  • Bereavement support is available to anyone following a death and includes sudden or traumatic deaths from accidents, suicide or other traumas.
  • Friends and family can come into the Centre with or without the person and see some of our resources. They can also come to the relaxation circle with the person.
  • Family members, friends, health care professionals and patients may request support.
  • Anyone can have a Care at Home Binder to help manage care at home.
  • Delta Hospice Society trained volunteers can companion with someone at any point along their journey.

All these services are offered at no cost.  For all our supportive and bereavement  services call us at 604-948-0660.

Delta’s Hospice Palliative Care Program

Referral to the hospice palliative care program is appropriate within the last months or weeks of life. There may be a need for home care nursing, personal care assistance or symptom management. Although hospice criteria allows for people to be admitted to the program with a six-month prognosis, too often people are referred in the last weeks of life and do not receive the true benefit of the program. Anyone can make a referral to the program.

If you are needing palliative support

  • People can have their doctor make a referral to the Delta (or other community) Hospice Palliative Care Program so that they can become connected to the program and can access symptom management from the medical palliative care doctor. They can also access some medications and other resources at no cost on this program.
  • People can also call the Home Health Office and get home care support for symptoms  — see Home care can also put them on the program for access to services and resources.
  • In Delta, call the Centre for Supportive Care (604-948-0660) and ask to speak with the social worker to set up an appointment.  The social worker can also connect people with the palliative care doctor.

Hospice Palliative Care Consultation Team

In Delta, the Clinical Nurse Specialist, Physician Specialist, Social Worker and Counsellors are available to individuals and families, as well as to care team members. They work closely with family physicians in a consultation role to assist with complex medical, emotional, social or spiritual issues.

Each situation is assessed on an individual basis to help people determine what it is they need and how to access services. Our team may be able to help you navigate information regarding:

  1. Our Supportive Care Programs
  2. Our Palliative Care Programs
  3. Specialist Consultation Support
  4. Home Care Nursing: Home Care Nursing provides professional nursing care to eligible British Columbia residents of all ages outside the confines of an acute care hospital. A request for service may originate from the physician, patient, family, hospice or community agency.The Home Care Nursing team will set up home support services to provide help with personal care. This home help, when referred by Home Care Nursing, is free of charge. Additional services can be paid for on a private basis or with financial assistance from a variety of government programs.
  5. After Hours Support: BCNurseLine provides easy access to help for your health concerns any time of the day or night. The BC NurseLine is a toll-free health information line, staffed by knowledgeable specially trained registered nurses who answer your questions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The nurse helps you to know when you can treat a problem safely at home and when you need to see a doctor or go to an emergency room. The nurse will help to determine whether there is a need to seek further medical assistance.  BC NurseLine  811.  24 hour toll-free within BC, 1-866-215-4700.  In Greater Vancouver, 604-215-4700. Deaf/hearing impaired toll-free, 1-966-889-4700.  Translation services are available in 130 languages.
  6. Compassionate Leave for Caregivers: Information on Compassionate Care Benefits (benefits paid to persons who have to be away from work temporarily to provide care or support to a family   member who is gravely ill with a significant risk of death) and survivor benefits can be found at
  7. The BC Palliative Care Benefits Program: see more information below

BC Palliative Care Benefits Program

Previously, choosing to die at home surrounded by family and friends was often not an option because of the cost to individuals for medication, medical supplies and equipment needed for care and treatment.

The BC Palliative Care Benefits Program, which became effective on February 1, 2001, removes some of the financial barrier for BC residents who want to receive hospice palliative care services at home. The BC Palliative Care Benefits Program is funded and administered by the Ministry of Health. Pharmacare, through Pharmanet, facilitates payment for the drugs dispensed to eligible patients.

This program assists eligible patients with:

Eligibility is determined by an individual’s physician. The program was developed to support individuals of any age who have advanced illness and are facing months, weeks or days to live. Persons eligible are BC residents who are enrolled in MSP, living at home and have a life expectancy of up to six months.

The Drug Program provides coverage for prescribed medications that support symptom control and quality of life, and selected non-prescription medications required along with those prescribed medications. Physicians and pharmacists have a copy of the Palliative Care Drug Formulary that lists all medications currently available at no cost as benefits under the Program.

A physician must make a referral for medical supplies and equipment directly to the local health authority (Fraser Health Authority for Delta). The home care nurse or nurse from the palliative care program will help to determine what medical supplies and equipment are required.

For a printed handout on the BC Palliative Care Benefits Program, including drugs and medical equipment covered under the plan, call or visit our Care Centre. Click here for Ministry of Health BC Palliative Care Benefits Program information.

Medical equipment not covered by the BC Palliative Benefits Program is available for purchase and/or rental. Check our most up-to-date community resource guide to find a list of resources.

Delta Hospital Emergency
BC Government Palliative Care Benefits