Hospice house moves closer

NEAR GOAL — Pledges and gifts to the planned construction of “Our House” in Tracy now approach $240,000.

By Seth Schmidt

Plans for a residential hospice house in Tracy are slowly moving forward.

Hospice of Murray County recently submitted a license application with the State of Minnesota, to operate the Tracy hospice, administrator Nathan Schunke said Monday, and is waiting for state approval.

Once a state license is obtained, the organization will have a Hospice Facility ID number that’s needed for submitting final architectural plans for state approval, Schunke said.

Once the plans are approved, construction bids will be sought.

“A lot of moving pieces” are at play, Schunke said.

Hospice of Murray County has announced plans to build a four-bedroom, 6,100 square foot residential hospice house in Tracy.  A one-acre plot northeast of Sanford Tracy, near the intersection of Fifth St. East and State streets, has been selected as the site.

In 2016, the hospice board set a goal $250,000 in donations and pledges before construction could begin.

The total now stands at just over $237,000, Schunke said.

At its July meeting, the non-profit group’s board of directors gave their blessings to moving ahead with the project, Schunke said, since the drive is just short of the goal.

The administrator looks for a groundbreaking early next year.  An expected nine-month timeline would make an autumn 2019 opening for “Our House of Tracy” possible. The hospice house is designed to provide care for the terminally ill in a home-like setting.

Hospice of Murray County operates a four-bedroom residential hospice in Slayton that operates at near 100% capacity.   

The new Tracy facility, to be called “Our House” hospice of Tracy, would complement the existing hospice program.