The Wish Project


What is “The Wish Project”?

Despite many advancements in medicine, all patients and their care teams must face death as an eventual reality. This is an aspect of medicine that is tough for all those involved, including family, friends, providers, staff, and the patient. The Wish Project  seeks to provide care even after accepting that death is imminent. We grant wishes to celebrate our patient's lives and passions. This can ease grief for families by providing a means for them to support their loved ones, and can allow staff to provide something for their patients even when they are unable to do so medically. We hope that by granting wishes to those who have little time left with us, it will leave a lasting and memorable impact on all those involved.

Our History

A project called the “3 Wishes” started in January 2013 at the St. Joseph Healthcare facility in Ontario, Canada. An intensive care unit (ICU) physician, Dr. Deborah Cook, designed a project to carry out three final wishes for patients at the end of their life. Dr. Cook and her team found that small, low cost, low risk acts were able to ease the grieving process for patients, families, and hospital staff.

We were inspired by her work and with the support of the Stanford Tri-Valley hospitalist group, Tri-Valley hospital staff, dedicated volunteers, and a gift from the ValleyCare Charitable Foundation, we launched our program in June 2018.