In our three-part series find out how important finding the right hospice care team to partner with can be during your hospice journey.
“If you are choosing a hospice care team, Paradigm Health takes the time to build a relationship and create a plan of care to enhance each and every day for the patient and their family and caregivers.”
Recently, we sat down with Paradigm Health’s Vice President of Business Development Chalise Johnson to talk with her about hospice care and the importance of finding the right hospice care provider.
In the last of a three-part series, Chalise explains how each of the Paradigm Health hospice caregiving team roles assists in helping patients and families navigate the hospice care journey.
Q: In Series 2 we identified what Paradigm Health team members may be a part of caring for the hospice patient and in assisting families throughout the hospice journey. Can you identify what those were for us again?
CJ: While keeping the patient comfortable and supported throughout the hospice journey from a clinical standpoint is a priority, there are a multitude of Paradigm Health team members that may be a part of caring for the patient and in assisting families throughout the hospice journey. Those might include:
- Hospice nurses and certified nursing assistants
- Social workers
- Occupational. speech and physical therapists
- Certified music therapists
- Life enrichment offerings such as art and pet therapy
- Volunteer Support
Q: Can you describe in a bit more detail what each of those team members contribute during the hospice journey?
CJ: Of course. We should remember that each individual hospice journey is unique to each patient and to their family experience. Below are some descriptions of those Paradigm Health team members that may be a part of an individual’s care team:
Hospice nurse and certified nursing assistant (CNA):
- Our Paradigm Health hospice care nurses are the best in the business. They are on the front lines providing hands-on, compassionate, hospice care to patients and families each and every day. Their care goals during hospice care are to concentrate on alleviating patient’s symptoms, pain, and stress that come from a serious illness and to act as a liaison between the patient/family and the doctor or medical care team and develop a unique plan of care for each patient’s goals. Paradigm hospice care focuses on the living, encouraging our patients and families to maximize and enjoy every day. Our certified nursing assistants are trained in helping to maintain a patient’s everyday personal care.
- During the hospice care journey our licensed social workers are great reference source of information. I liken them to an encyclopedia as their knowledge about care and the system is invaluable and wide-ranging. Our case managers, nurses and entire hospice care team at Paradigm depend on them when we are in needs of answers on insurance questions, problems transferring to and/or from a hospital or rehab facility, and for a multitude of other resource-connecting benefits and information.
Chaplains and bereavement services:
- Our chaplains are non-denominational and meet the patient and their family wherever they are in their spiritual journey. They are there to provide spiritual or religious support, to lend a listening ear, to assist in capturing the patient’s life journey, or to just be a compassionate hand to hold or provide basic companionship. At the end of the hospice journey, the Paradigm Health bereavement team stays in contact with the patient’s family for up to 13 months and can provide a multitude of support and resources to manage the grief process.
Occupational, speech and physical therapists:
- Paradigm Health is proud to offer physical, occupational, and speech therapy to assist as your loved one recovers from their acute condition. Each therapy plan is unique. We are intent on tailoring the therapy to meet each individual’s needs within whatever environment they are currently calling home. A thorough assessment is completed at the patient’s time of admission to determine how often that patient should receive therapy services.
Certified music therapists:
- At Paradigm Health we have four board certified music therapists. In the hospice setting, music therapy provides support for patients and their families at the end of life. Certified music therapists are not just performers. Music therapists have training in music and psychology, and they use music to address clinical goals such as pain, stress and anxiety relief and can provide a source of comfort and support for the patient and the family.
- Each and every day for a hospice patient should be as enriched as possible. A sense of well-being can impact the physical condition of the hospice patient more than most people realize. Paradigm Health is dedicated to providing innovative therapies to enhance life’s journey even in hospice. Those can include music therapy, pet therapy, art enrichment, memory bear and dementia fiddle blankets and our own Project Bloom.
- Paradigm Health hospice volunteers are specially trained individuals, who provide assistance to patients, their families and the hospice team. As an invaluable resource, they bring a friendly smile, warm conversation, a hand to hold or offer a welcome respite for a family. While the current pandemic has put a temporary hold on in-person volunteer companionship visits, the Paradigm team has worked to navigate other ways to reach out and stay in contact with hospice patients using several virtual platforms, providing written cards of support and encouragement and much more.
Q: What would you like for patients and families to know who may have recently had a hospice diagnosis as we close out our three-part series?
CJ: Hospice care does not always mean that a patient is going to die. I have had many patients who have graduated off of hospice care based on a change or improvement in their condition. In some instances, though, hospice care is there to assist in the patient’s pain management and comfort during a shortened end-of-life journey. Paradigm Health is unlike anywhere else I’ve ever worked, and their culture puts both the staff and the patient as the priority. I think that translates to exceptional hospice care. We know that each and every day is a chance to enrich and live life to the fullest and we have the people and caregiving tools in place to make sure that happens every day — and we do it with consistency and compassion.