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Kanas Center for Hospice Care opens on South Fork

02/06/2016 12:00 PM |

Kanas Center Hospice Care

When East End Hospice officials were working with architect Roger Ferris + Partners to design the Kanas Center for Hospice Care, their new Quiogue inpatient facility, they decided it was crucial that the building provide a comfortable, home-like atmosphere. 

“We wanted it to be open and airy and not feel like a health care facility,” said East End Hospice president and CEO Priscilla Ruffin.

It appears they have achieved that goal. Located just outside Westhampton Beach, the 12,000-square-foot center, which is set to open this month, is light-filled and modern, its walls dotted with bright paintings donated by local artists. Eight patient suites offer sitting areas and private terraces overlooking a nature preserve, along with flat-screen televisions, personal refrigerators and a wall of closets.

Kanas Center photos by Rachel Young.

Kanas Center photos by Rachel Young.

The building itself, which sits on six acres, contains a spacious great room with chic furniture, built-in bookcases, a fireplace and kitchenette. There’s even a spa, with a haircutting and shampoo station, jetted tub and massage chair.

“It’s incredibly unique,” said Ralph Lambert, whose Hauppauge company, Axis Construction, built the structure. “As you walk through the corridors of glass and you look out into the nature preserve and the creek, and then you make a turn and you look down into the patient area, it’s like a first-class hotel.”

Constructed using a $2 million gift from the John and Elaine Kanas Family Foundation, the Meeting House Road facility provides 24-hour care for end-of-life patients who cannot be cared for at home. Three people are already on the waiting list, Ms. Ruffin said, and the center is open to residents across Long Island.

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“Patients and families will come here when home is not a viable option anymore, when they need intensive nursing care,” said Ms. Ruffin, adding that families can spend the night at the center and even bring leashed pets for visits.

Southampton couple Dr. Jay Hunt and his wife, Carol, who were touring the facility during an open house last week, called it “fantastic.”

“I like that you can wheel the beds out onto the deck,” said Ms. Hunt, an artist who donated five paintings to the center.

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“The room isn’t closed in, like you sometimes see in hospitals,” her husband added.

The Kanas Center for Hospice Care is the first brick-and-mortar facility for East End Hospice, which was founded in 1991. Its primary focus continues to be providing in-home hospice care, but Ms. Ruffin said the new center is representative of the way the world has changed.

“As demographics have changed and the structures of families have changed, more and more people can’t remain at home to be safe and be cared for when they’re in a position of complete dependence,” she said.

Have a health column idea for Rachel Young? Email her at [email protected].

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