Dignity Hospice provides a special type of care that is designed to provide comfort and support to a patient and their family when a life-limiting illness no longer responds to cure-oriented treatments. Our care is provided wherever a patient calls “home” – all under the direction of a physician. Working with you, your family, and your physician, our qualified team will plan, coordinate, and provide compassionate hospice care that is tailored to meet your specific needs.
Dignity’s medical team is led by an experienced physician as our Hospice Medical Director. Dignity’s Medical Director oversees and directs you or your loved one’s care primarily in a consulting role. Our Medical Director also provides home visits to recertify a patient’s qualifications for hospice and address acute symptoms, when needed. Dignity’s hospice team meets with the Medical Director every 14 days to review and discuss the status of each individual patient and make any adjustments in the plan of care as needed.
A skilled nurse is a Registered Nurse (RN) or a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) with training and experience in providing hospice care. The nurse is the “Case Manager” that communicates frequently with you (or your loved one), your physician and Dignity’s Medical Director to address your specific care plan needs. The Case Manager regularly evaluates patient needs, performs a variety of skilled nursing procedures and coordinates care with the other Dignity team members. The Case Manager also provides education to patients, family members, and caregivers about their end-of-life disease processes, self-care techniques, and prevention strategies.
Dignity’s Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) care for patients under the supervision of Dignity’s RN Case Managers. Dignity’s CNAs have extensive training and experience in providing personal care services in a patient’s home (or place they call “home”). Dignity’s RN Case Manager’s provide our CNAs with very detailed and specific care plans for each individual patient. Any duties a Dignity CNA is scheduled to provide will be discussed between a patient and/or family and the assigned RN Case Manager. Some of the duties one can expect from a Dignity CNA include, but are not limited to, bathing, shampooing hair, assisting at mealtime, changing bed linens and assisting with other activities of daily living, etc.
Medical Social Worker
Dignity’s Medical Social Workers are collaborative members of our team that do an exceptional job in providing for the social and emotional needs of patients and families. You or your loved one’s social worker has received extensive training in grief & loss support as well counseling during and after the end-of-life process. In addition, your social worker can assist with obtaining community resources that may be available, walking you or your loved one through advanced directives, supportive interventions that assist in improving a patient’s quality of life and assistance with funeral arrangements.
Dignity’s Spiritual Counselors (or Chaplains) are vital members of our hospice team. Our Spiritual Counselors are specially trained to support belief systems across faiths and cultures. Dignity’s Spiritual Counselors provide spiritual guidance and support during the end-of-life process and also help patients, caregivers, friends and family members find peace during and after the hospice journey.
Dignity is incredibly proud to offer bi-weekly massage therapy visits for every hospice patient. The extra comfort of therapeutic touch has proven to be effective in reducing pain and anxiety while also increasing a patient’s ability to find rest. Dignity’s massage therapists have a minimum of 1,000 hours of training and every massage is tailored specifically to ensure the safety for each patient.
Dignity has a team of volunteers who visit patients with their four-legged furry friend, who are registered with the Alliance of Therapy Dogs (ATD). Researchers and experts agree that pets excel as therapeutic agents and that dogs are an antidote to depression. Studies have also shown a decrease in both blood pressure and stress levels during therapy dog visits. A visit from a Dignity volunteer and their therapy dog can break the daily routine, increase overall emotional well-being, and stimulate the mind in dramatic ways. Our ATD dogs offer so many wonderful benefits to patients, their caregivers and their families.
Dignity has a team of hospice volunteers that provide a beautiful element of companionship for our patients. All Dignity volunteers go through an extensive interview process, background check and training to ensure that each patient receives the highest level of care possible.
Grief & Loss Support
General Inpatient Care
Sometimes if a patient’s pain or other symptoms can be better managed with 24-hour staff available, Dignity will recommend short-term placement in a skilled nursing facility until symptoms are stabilized. General Inpatient Care (GIP) usually lasts less than a week, and Dignity covers this care 100%. Dignity contracts with a variety of skilled nursing facilities in the area to assist in providing this care.
Sometimes caregivers find themselves in a position where they desperately need a few days of rest in the midst of taking care of their loved one on hospice. Respite care is provided by Dignity to allow caregivers some time off. Dignity Hospice facilitates this by arranging for patient placement in a skilled nursing facility for up to five (5) days. Dignity also encourages caregivers to take advantage of the time Dignity staff are present in the home to attend appointments, run errands, or just relax.
Dignity Hospice offers complete coverage of medications directly related to a patient’s hospice diagnosis as well as medications for comfort. Upon the initial assessment, Dignity’s Registered Nurse (RN) Case Managers thoroughly review and discuss a patient’s medications with the patient and/or family directly, as well as with Dignity’s Medical Director. Dignity’s Medical Director ultimately determines which medications will be covered by hospice.
Durable Medical Equipment & Medical Supplies
Dignity Hospice provides any necessary Durable Medical Equipment (DME). All DME is delivered wherever a patient calls “home”, free of charge, to assist with comfort, safety and quality of life. Upon admission, Dignity’s RN Case Managers work with the patient and their family to discuss their specific DME needs and answer any questions they might have. A patient’s equipment may include, but is not limited to; a wheelchair, walker, hospital bed, bedside table, bedside commode, oxygen, etc. In addition, Dignity Hospice will provide any necessary medical supplies such as briefs, wipes, gloves, wound care supplies, etc. These items are ordered by Dignity’s RN Case Managers and are delivered to the patient’s home, free of charge.