York County's first hospice home in 20 years to open in fall

York County's first hospice home in two decades is set to open this fall in York Township.

Pappus House, the county's first home hospice, is set to open in September. Photo courtesy of Pappus House.


Pappus House, a nonprofit formerly known as Friends for a York County Hospice Home, will open their location on Cherry Street in the township in September, board president Beth Gill-McDonald said.

The location will be the county's only "social model hospice home," which is a residential environment dedicated to end-of-life care for individuals and their families in collaboration with their hospice provider, according to a release from Pappus House.

"We’re creating a home, not unlike anybody else’s home," Gill-McDonald said.

According to York Dispatch records, a hospice house called York House Hospice was open in York City for five years before closing in November 1996. York House Hospice was the only hospice for dying AIDS patients, but declining numbers of patients forced it to close.

Home-like: Gill-McDonald said the location will keep that "home-like feel," for those who cannot spend the last few months of their life in their own homes.

"We kind of say it’s the next best place to your own home," Gill-McDonald said.

The home will have 24-hour on-site personal care and attendance by caregivers, and medical and nursing care will be delivered by the resident's hospice-care provider.  

There will be home-cooked meals made for the residents, and the residents will be allowed to have open visitation by children and pets at any hour.

The location, a three-bedroom home on a York Township farm, is undergoing renovations for its fall opening. It will initially start small, with three rooms available, but the organization is planning to expand the home to eight bedrooms.

Location: Gill-McDonald said the location is surrounded by fields.

"It's a beautiful, serene setting," she said.

The location was made possible by board member John Polli, the president and owner of Dallastown-based Reliance Transportation. Polli is a board member for Pappus House.

"It’s nice scenery for people who just want to look out," Polli said.

He said he and his wife purchased a farm, and the home came with it. Polli, a newer member of the board, brought the home to the attention of the board.

However, Polli gives most of the credit to the organization.

"We just think what these ladies are doing is important," he said.

Since the purchase, Polli said he has put about $60,000 in renovations to the home.

"We did an extensive amount of work to the house," he said.

Now the Pappus House is taking over the rest of the renovations before the September opening.

"My wife and I think it’s a great project," Polli said.

The organization will be renting the home for two years.

"That gives us a chance to get things started," Gill-McDonald said.

For more information on Pappus House, including how to help, check www.pappushouse.org. 

— Reach Christopher Dornblaser at cdornblaser@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @YDDornblaser.

Editor's note:  This story has been corrected to include information regarding the York House Hospice.