First children’s hospice opening in Denmark

Lukashuset will be a place of help, relief and fulfilment

The first hospice for children and young people in Denmark, named Lukashuset, will open its doors on November 1 in Hellerup.

Lukashuset won’t just be open to terminally-ill patients, but will also function as a place of relief for the critically-ill where young people can come and stay as they battle their illness.

“At the children’s hospice the kids can get help for the medicinal treatment they require, but there is also more space and more of a focus on family life and life fulfilment for the child compared to a hospital,” Thomas Feveile, the head of the hospice, told Jyllands-Posten newspaper.

READ MORE: Anxiety an increasing problem for Danish children

Children have other needs
Lukashuset will have space for four children or young people and their families, and it will be free for the children to stay there as the costs will be financed by the Sankt Lukas Foundation. In the long run, the foundation hopes to obtain financial aid from the state.

Children hospices already exist in Germany, Sweden and the Netherlands, but Danish politicians were unsure whether Denmark needed one.

“A hospice for adults is mostly for the person’s last two to three weeks of life during a struggle with cancer. Life-threatening illnesses can take several years longer for children than adults, because children are stronger,” Feveile said.

“And because there are often several kinds of life-threatening illnesses among children, they also behave differently than cancer patients. For instance, some of these kids have been admitted to hospital several hundred times over six to seven years.”