Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Hope Recognized as a Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador

Hope Healthcare has been recognized as a Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador as part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s initiative designed to help serve the public by strengthening our national resilience against extreme weather events.

“Hurricane Irma tested Hope’s preparedness plan, and I’m proud to say we passed with flying colors,” said Samira K. Beckwith, Hope Healthcare president and CEO. “Our dedicated staff and volunteers rose to the challenge and worked tirelessly to care for so many of our community’s most vulnerable who needed special help during an already difficult time.”

“Hope’s association with the Weather-Ready Nation program allows us to utilize our vital connection to the community and encourage people to heed warnings and take appropriate action during severe weather,” Beckwith added.

As a WRN Ambassador, Hope Healthcare is committed to working with NOAA and other ambassadors from government, non-profits, academia and private industry to help make the nation more ready, responsive and resilient against extreme environmental hazards.


Wednesday, November 1, 2017

A Message from Our CEO for National Hospice Month

A Catholic priest I know used to ask the congregation, “How many of you want to go to heaven?” Once all the hands were in the air, he would pause for a moment before delivering the follow-up question: “Do you know you have to die to get there?”

Talking about life’s final chapter is still one of the most difficult topics that we all face. We are one of the only cultures that believe that death is optional and avoids talking about it. At Hope Hospice, we don’t want to talk about death either. We want to talk with people about living every day as fully as possible, without suffering or worrying about being a burden on the family. We want people think about what they can do, how to leave a legacy and what story people will share about them.

As part of National Hospice and Palliative Care Month in November, Hope Hospice is committed to providing community education about care so that people have the information they need to make the best choices for themselves and their families.

Hospice enhances a patients’ quality of life and eases the transition for their loved ones. But sadly, many people delay seeking help from hospice because of fear and misconceptions.

In a recent article published by the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, the authors of “Study Finds Hospice Patients are Admitted Too Late” reported that while older adults experience unhealthy symptoms and disabilities for months, half of these patients are admitted to hospice only in the last two weeks of their lives. Another study showed that people who were under hospice care actually lived longer than those who were not offered hospice care. They also reported living better.

Hospice does not mean giving up. It means preparing for the final chapter of life, living each day to the fullest, looking at what you can do and having control over your care.

Hospice is a comprehensive program of care and services that brings the patient and family expert medical, emotional and spiritual support along with coverage for medications, supplies and other items not usually covered in the health care system. People can receive care in private residences, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, or in one of our four Hope Hospice Houses. Hope also offers grief and bereavement services to family members – including programs specifically for children.

Hope’s palliative care program is also available to ensure comfort and dignity while preventing needless suffering from pain, shortness of breath, nausea, depression and other symptoms before hospice care is needed. Palliative care is available for adults, teens, children and infants with serious illnesses who can benefit from comprehensive holistic services.

Eligibility for hospice benefits and palliative care often begins sooner than you would expect. Please remember to speak with your doctor about options as soon as a life-limiting diagnosis is made or call us directly. Hope’s comforting care is a call away for people of all ages, backgrounds, traditions, religions, diseases -- at the time when it is needed most.

Samira K. Beckwith is President and CEO of Hope Healthcare, a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3)-status community-based agency offering programs and services in Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Hendry and Glades counties.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Eighth Annual Donation Drive at Evelyn & Arthur to Benefit Hope Chest at The Crossings

In honor of National Hospice Month, Evelyn & Arthur at The Promenade at Bonita Bay will continue their tradition of offering shoppers a special discount on an in-store purchase from Nov. 1-18 if they bring in a gently used item of clothing, an accessory or a pair of shoes for donation.

Evelyn & Arthur, who has partnered with Hope Healthcare for National Hospice Month since 2008, collects the donated apparel for Hope Chest at The Crossings, the upscale resale store benefiting Hope Healthcare programs that provide exceptional care and support to individuals and their loved ones as they fulfill life’s journey.



Friday, September 1, 2017

Celebrating Inaugural National PACE Month in September


Hope Healthcare’s PACE Program is celebrating the inaugural National PACE month this September with the theme “Delivering Independence,” which celebrates the role of PACE providers in promoting independence for aging adults.

Designed to meet the needs of seniors while also helping their families and caregivers, PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly) provides comprehensive, coordinated health care and dental services, therapies, transportation and meals for those who would prefer not to live in a nursing home.

Hope Healthcare’s main goal when implementing the PACE Program in 2008 was to help seniors continue to live independently in the place they call home, according to Samira K. Beckwith, president and CEO of Hope Healthcare and the founding president of the Florida PACE Association.

“The challenges of aging or living with chronic illness can make it difficult to remain at home, especially when the individual has increased needs,” said Beckwith. “PACE brings essential health care services together to ensure participants find the help they need to live well and independently at home with physical, emotional and social support.”

Hope’s PACE program currently serves more than 400 participants in Florida’s Collier, Charlotte and Lee counties. Support for those who are 55 and older is provided in Hope Care Centers located in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres, Naples and Port Charlotte, as well as in participant’s homes. In addition to meeting health care needs, PACE offers help with personal care and light housekeeping.

The program can coordinate with the participant’s doctor and provide all health care services, including primary and specialized medical care; medications; medical supplies and equipment; lab and diagnostic services; occupational, speech and physical therapy; all necessary prescription drugs; home care and personal care aides; and hospitalization and skilled nursing facility care.

Learn more by calling Hope PACE directly at (239) 985-6400.

Monday, August 28, 2017

After Addiction Takes a Life: Grief Support for Special Circumstances


A unique support group is available for those who have lost a friend or loved one to substance abuse. Find support through your grief journey from your fellow participants as well as a licensed counselor from Hope Healthcare. These ongoing sessions are open to everyone in the community and are provided at no charge.

2nd and 4th Monday of each month from 3:00 - 4:30 p.m.
Hope Healthcare Community Room
Hope Care Center in Lehigh Acres
1201 Wings Way, Lehigh Acres, FL 33936

To join this group, please contact Edita H. Kulichova at 239.333.4245. Pre-registration is required.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Congressman Francis Rooney visits Hope PACE and Hope Hospice



Hope Healthcare President and CEO Samira K. Beckwith hosted Congressman Francis Rooney at Hope’s PACE Center and Hospice House in Fort Myers.

Rooney visited with several participants in Hope PACE, a Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly. While at the Care Center, he learned how the program’s multifaceted services allow aging adults in southwest Florida to stay healthy, active and socially connected. With this unique support, PACE participants are able to remain safely in their own homes, rather than being placed in a nursing facility.

“I am looking forward to working with Samira Beckwith and her amazing team, to make caring for seniors in our community less burdensome,” said Congressman Rooney. “I have written a letter to Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta, requesting relief from excessive labor regulations on home health care workers. We should be supporting programs like PACE, and making it easier on caregivers, not making it more difficult for them to function.”

Rooney also thanked the staff and volunteers at the Hope Hospice House in Fort Myers and spent time with those in Hope’s care.

“It was inspiring to see how invested Congressman Rooney is in both Hope’s mission and its innovative programs that serve the most vulnerable in our community,” said Beckwith. “He truly cares about the issues that affect their lives.”

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Hope Hospice Kids’ Room Gets Makeover with BB&T’s Help


Thanks to help from BB&T–Oswald Trippe and Company, visitors to the Kids’ Room at Hope Hospice House in Fort Myers will be greeted by new toys and DVDs, a TV, artwork and fresh furnishings in a completely updated space that serves as a cheerful respite for children with family members in Hope’s care.

After selecting Hope Hospice as the recipient of their Safeco Lighthouse Project grant, BB&T team members worked together with Hope to coordinate renovations throughout the summer.

“We had a great time remodeling the Kids’ Playroom. We helped to create a warm and inviting place for children and parents to unwind while visiting their loved ones,” said Stacey Mercado, marketing and sales development specialist at BB&T–Oswald Trippe and Company.

 Updates to walls, flooring, furniture and decor completed the new playroom.

“We are so grateful to BB&T for volunteering their time and making the Kids’ Room renovation a reality,” said Samira K. Beckwith, president and CEO of Hope Healthcare. “Caring community partners like BB&T help us make a difference to the families we serve.”

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Hula Connection Entertains at Hospice House

On Sunday, July 30, dancers from Hula Connection came to entertain guests at the Hope Hospice House. Volunteers threw a luau - complete with grass skirts, leis, tiki hut, virgin mai tai's and piƱa coladas. There was even an audience participation dance held in each wing!







Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Dad's Grief Toolkit Series Coming in September

An 8 Week Series for Men Coping with the Loss of a Child

This series of classes, led by professional Hope staff, will cover topics such as Grief 101, Talking to Your Children, and Defining a New Normal.

Participants will be asked to complete a one-on-one counseling session with a Hope bereavement counselor prior to attending. There is no charge for either the individual session or the biweekly classes. Please call ahead to reserve your space for this workshop.

Series begins Wednesday, September 6th from 6:00-7:30 pm
Continues 1st and 3rd Wednesday of Each Month
Hope Community Room, HealthPark Office
9470 HealthPark Circle, Fort Myers, FL 33908

To attend, please contact Lorrie McCann, LMHC at (239) 985-7716.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

New Issue of Parkinson Program Newsletter

The summer edition of the Hope Parkinson Program newsletter is available. This issue includes information on:
  • Xadago Add-On Therapy
  • Foods for Living Well with Parkinson’s
  • SpeechVive Medical Device
  • Calendar of Upcoming Events
You can also subscribe to this quarterly newsletter, provided at no cost to participants, by joining the Hope Parkinson Program.

Partnership with United States Vietnam War Commemoration

Hope Healthcare has announced its partnership with The United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration to thank and honor Vietnam veterans and their families for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the nation.

Following in the footsteps of commemorations honoring military service in World War II and Korea, this multiyear commemoration – instituted by the United States government under the auspices of the Department of Defense – aims to thank and honor 7 million living Vietnam veterans and the families of all 9 million who served on active duty in the U.S. armed forces from Nov. 1, 1955 to May 15, 1975, regardless of location.

“Hope has a long tradition of honoring our veterans through our VALOR program and Honor Guard,” said Hope Healthcare President and CEO Samira K. Beckwith. “This partnership with the Department of Defense provides an additional opportunity for Hope to give special recognition to those in our care who served in the Vietnam War.”

Friday, June 16, 2017

Dixieland Band Delights Guests at Hope's Care Center in Lehigh Acres

On June 13, the Dixieland Jazz Band gave their first performance at the Hope Care Center in Lehigh Acres. When the band members started showing up, they were worried that they would be too loud for our guests, but were reassured that they were welcome.

The band started in the first wing, where two family members sat at a back table. As they set up, our volunteers started walking from room to room offering cake and ice cream to the residents and families. Staff members closed the doors to reduce the volume a little, but as soon as the band started playing, doors started reopening. Family members came out with big grins on their faces.

Before the first song had ended, every table was full, and there were family members dancing and swaying to the music. People who had turned down refreshments walked up to the volunteers and said “You know, maybe I WILL have cake and ice cream after all!”

There were two little girls visiting their great-grandmother, Barbara, who originally started following the group because of the cake, but they became absolutely enamored of the band, and stayed as close as they could to them. One of the band members plays the washboard, and at one point he let both girls play it, to their utter delight.

After finishing 4 or 5 songs in the first wing, the band traveled onward, with the girls in tow. When the group arrived, two residents were already sitting in the common area waiting for us. All of the band members went out of their way to go over and individually greet each resident, shaking their hands. They even took requests.

After the third song, the little girls’ mother came over to a nurse and said, “My mother would like to come out to hear the music!”

Barbara was too ill to even sit up, so Hope staff wheeled her bed out into the common area – and she was clapping along to the music as she was moved! One at a time, the band members walked over as they were playing and surrounded Barbara's bed, so that they were playing directly to her as she clapped.

Barbara teared up several times, and her daughter asked her why. She replied, “Because I’m so happy!”

The two gentlemen who'd been there all along were asked if the band should keep playing, and they responded with an enthusiastic YES. One asked if they could come back again.

At the same time, the little girls had been playing with their great-grandmother’s white board, and during the last song, they wrote THANK YOU in great big letters and held it up. Including Barbara, there were four generations of her family there enjoying the day.

When everyone was finished cleaning up, the husband of one of our residents stopped on his way out to thank everyone for the party, and said “What a way to send my wife out!”