Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Tree of Lights Tradition Continues at Hope Hospice

We welcome friends and family members to remember a loved one this year by adding a butterfly to our Tree of Lights. This annual tradition at Hope has a special history and has become a cherished ritual for many of our supporters.

The white butterflies on each Tree represent the loved ones who we remember all year long and who we especially want to honor and memorialize during the holiday season.

  • A gift of $25 ensures the placement of a personalized butterfly.
  • With a gift of $50 or more, donors will also receive a 2017 metal keepsake ornament for their own tree. 
  • Dedication stones for our Tribute Gardens are also available for $250 and come with all the benefits listed above.

Ornaments may be purchased at the front desk of each Hope Hospice House or at Donate.HopeHCS.org/TreeofLights.

Introducing Hope Choices: Complementary Care for Serious Illness

Hope Healthcare has introduced a new program designed for those who would benefit from hospice care, but are not ready to forgo treatment for their terminal condition.

Hope Choices, a Medicare Care Choices Model, offers select hospice support services at no cost while allowing people to continue receiving curative treatments from their existing physician for cancer, congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or human immunodeficiency virus.

“Hope Choices combines the comforting care of hospice with curative care,” said Samira K. Beckwith, Hope Healthcare president and CEO. “We’re grateful to be part of this model program that allows us to expand our services by supporting patients and families living with the challenges of serious illness.”

Hope Choices offers a personalized, comprehensive assessment and plan of care and care coordination; nursing care; in-home respite care; aide and homemaker assistance; and counseling and family support, in addition to other services. The program provides symptom management and support through a combination of in-person visits and 24/7 telephone access.

To learn more about Hope Choices, call (239) 482-4673.

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.